Football journalist Sam Parkin has been sharing his criticism for Sunderland duo Luke O’Nien and Dion Sanderson for their defensive performance during the Black Cats’ recent 1-0 win over Bristol Rovers in League One.
This comes after Parkin made an appearance on a recent episode of The Totally Football League Show where he spoke about a number of topics concerning a range of clubs across the Championship, League One and League Two.
On the subject of Sunderland’s win over Bristol Rovers, Parkin had this to say about the two centre-backs and their display in the win.
He said: “I watched quite a bit of the first half – I think that a few mistakes are starting to creep into that centre-half partnership, and Luke O’Nien was maybe at fault for the goal against Lincoln and in the first half [against Bristol Rovers] they were really poor here, I felt.
“They really lacked urgency. Kept the organisation, but I thought that [Jonah] Ayunga in particular, caused those two quite a number of problems, so I think yes, although they’re getting away with it, and there have been some stellar performances from the defending players that have been shuffled around, I think Bailey Wright, for one, will probably walk straight back into that team when he’s available for the run-in.”
A goal from Aiden O’Brien in the first half of the match was enough to secure the win for Lee Johnson’s side in their latest league match.
TIF Thoughts on Sam Parkin’s comments on O’Nien and Sanderson’s performances against Bristol Rovers…
Given how O’Nien (6) and Sanderson (5) made more clearances during the game against Joey Barton’s side than any other Sunderland player, ultimately earning them match ratings that put the pair in the top six highest-rated Sunderland players on the day, it seems odd that Parkin was not impressed with the duo, in our view.
Were you disappointed by O'Nien and Sanderson against Bristol Rovers?
Taking this into account, and the fact that the duo managed to keep a clean sheet in the game, it will be intriguing to see whether or not Johnson tinkers with the defensive line or not for their remaining league games of the season as Parkin mentioned in the podcast.