De Futebol


My Gunners had a late surge to put away a pesky Sunderland squad 4-1.

The Daily Mail: “David Moyes says he will not walk away but that is exactly what thousands of Sunderland supporters did as they witnessed their side surrender to yet another demoralising defeat.

As they did, moving quicker than any of their players had during the previous six minutes in which Arsenal had scored three times, they returned an expletive-laden assessment. Moyes would have heard. He probably agrees. This team is ‘f****** s***’.

Indeed, they are now officially the worst after 10 games in Premier League history. We did not need this, however, to tell us that.


It is no secret Sunderland can’t really defend. It is no secret they aren’t great in attack, either.

It is no secret that players such as Wahbi Khazri and Lamine Kone – heroic during last season’s great escape – look as if they could not care less this time around. The sight of Kone swapping shirts with Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil on full-time appeared to irk Moyes when it was brought to his attention.


The likes of Kone might care when the reality of those relegation wage cuts kicks in. For that is where Sunderland are headed, no doubt.

The best Moyes can hope is that they at least make a fight of it and he remains in employment.

For now, he is refusing to quit.


‘I’m experienced. I’ve managed lots of games in the Premier League. So I’ll keep doing what I do. I’ll keep working them,’ said Moyes.


Former Sunderland chairman, manager and player Niall Quinn delivered a damning verdict when suggesting it was time to rip up Moyes’ approach and revert to that of ex-boss Sam Allardyce.

‘Quite frankly, it feels like death by a 1000 cuts. They have got to do something different now. I think they should go back to an Allardyce style,’ he said.


‘I think the crowd would respond to it if they went to a more direct style. Jermain Defoe would certainly respond to that.

‘I don’t think they are confident enough to play this passing style. I’m looking for leadership. But there is no leadership and there is nothing in that team to suggest they can play the type of football Moyes wants.’

In truth, there is nothing in the team to suggest they can play the style of football anyone wants.


Sunderland’s best chance of nicking an unlikely result might have arrived inside the opening 60 seconds when Jordan Pickford’s hurried clearance almost snapped the arm of Sanchez. Saying that, if the Chilean was forced off there would have been plenty of others queuing up to inflict damage on this fragile Sunderland side.

As it was, Sanchez broke the deadlock and not his arm. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain escaped down the right and centred. It wasn’t necessarily a wicked ball. Kone was favourite to clear. Except he didn’t. In fact, he didn’t even move. Sanchez did. And he scored, heading past Pickford from six yards.


Arsenal were having no problems creating chances of their own. Sunderland, though, soon sought to lay three on a plate.

Patrick van Aanholt dithered in possession and was robbed. Arsenal broke and Alex Iwobi smashed narrowly over from 20 yards.

The hopelessly unfit and uninspiring Khazri was then booked when he dwelt on the ball and was pick-pocketed by Oxlade-Chamberlain, dragging the Arsenal midfielder to the floor. From the free-kick Sanchez curled over.


And Khazri was again guilty of wanting too much time as he drifted near his own area and Oxlade-Chamberlain stole before driving in on goal and drawing a low save from Pickford.

But the hosts were thrown a lifeline on 65 minutes. Didier Ndong dropped a high ball forward and, when Shkodran Mustafi hesitated, Duncan Watmore burst in. The winger was through on goal and looked to have rounded Petr Cech only to be toppled by the goalkeeper’s midriff. Yellow card. Penalty. Defoe stepped up and duly dispatched for his fifth of the season.


Moyes responded by introducing Adnan Januzaj for Steven Pienaar, perhaps sensing a winner. He should, in hindsight, have protected the point.

Arsenal’s quick-fire treble began with Giroud – on the park for less than two minutes – heading in from a Kieran Gibbs cross. And he had another headed goal when directing a looping nod beyond Pickford from Ozil’s corner.

The humiliation was complete when Sanchez hooked in from close range after Gibbs’ shot cracked the post and Aaron Ramsey returned the rebound into the six-yard area.

Cue the mass walkout. It’s a wonder they turn up at all.