2011 that is. Flushed with the success of November NaBloPoMo I have decided to do it again. How rich my life must be.
That is the theme of the month, so I will attempt to mention friends, real and imaginary, each day.
Let's kick of with imaginary friends i.e. I think of them as my friends and they don't even know I exist: my sporting heroes at Sunderland AFC. After a disappointing Christmas period with two defeats, order was restored today when my boys thrashed Blackburn 3 - 0. Another clean sheet marred only by the fact that my Fantasy Football defender Onuohua was unfit, so I didn't get 3 points there. However, the team did and that moves us up to 6th only 4 points behind Chelsea. Admittedly, we have played 2 more games than them, but one of their games in hand is against Man U and we've already played them twice.
The other good point about this was that all three forwards scored, so my man Darren Bent is back on the goal trail after firing blanks for 5 games. Yee ha. Danny Welbeck got the first and Gyan the third late on. We have the FA cup next week so a little respite and a chance for some players to get fit, although we have held our own with key players missing. Today we were without Turner (long term knee injury) and Lee Cattermole (suspended) yet still held out very well. We are away at Aston Villa midweek, who are sputtering so we could have a chance there. After the cup it's Newcastle at home. This is a key game after the drubbing we took at their place. Mind you that seemed to affect our lads very positively as we went on to thump Chelsea in our next away game. I am sure that Bruce wants to put things right for the fans at home though.
The next home game after that is Chelsea. I would be delighted if we could do the double over them. The other two key home games are Tottenham and Liverpool. Good results there and we have only Man City and Arsenal away that would worry me. Europe here we come? 5 of our last 10 games are against teams in the bottom 6 which have their own pitfalls when teams are desperate for points. However, we are not the old Sunderland who had nothing to play for, or relegation to stave off ourselves. This could be the start of something big!
Here are some silent highlights of the greatest night of football I ever witnessed at the Stadium of Light. 2 goals from Niall Quinn; 2 goals from Kevin Phillips (the first, one of the best goals I have ever seen live) in 1999 against the team that put 7 past us on the first day of that season. Memories are made of this.