Black Cats boss may want to take a closer look at himself before he questions the Aston Villa bound striker’s decision to leave the Stadium of Light.
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First some qualifying statements before this article gets going.
1) Sunderland supporters are of course perfectly well within their rights to be angered that they have lost their top scorer
2) It is also understandable that some would argue that a move to Aston Villa could be considered a step down and that perhaps money was a motivating factor. Both points could of course be argued to the contary.
However would it be right to question the striker’s loyalty and most importantly how the hell can a man like Steve Bruce be the one to address that particular hot potato? For the Black Cats manager to state, and I quote, “All Benty’s thought of is himself but I suppose that’s football and that’s the way it is.” a statement he followed with ““It’s hugely disappointing that Darren has decided that his future lies away from Sunderland and the players, our supporters and the club as a whole have every right to feel massively let down,” . I will continue but not before I rub my hands in gleeful anticipation of being able to throw such ridiculously overblown statements back at the former Man United bruiser.
In case you didn’t know, Steve Bruce is not a popular man in Wigan or some parts of South London. You see some years ago the Northumberland born boss wasn’t quite sure which team would suit him best and where he could seek his fortune and his route to managerial success. Therefore the 50 year old manager developed something of a habit of leaving club’s shortly after joining them in order to take a position at the ‘Next Big Job’ that suited him.
He famously lasted under two months in his first spell as Wigan boss when he decided that his personal career progression would be better served at Crystal Palace. Which if you think about it is exactly what Darren Bent has elected to do, albeit with different clubs, as the striker, like Bruce before him, decided to try something new.
Bruce then didn’t appear to want the job at Selhurst Park and after barely five months and after much acrimony and hand wringing Crystal Palace allowed him to leave to pursue his managerial dreams at Birmingham City. On both occasions that Steve Bruce elected to move on after barely having arrived, he was of course questioned about his loyalty to those respective posts and as I remember it, he was relatively honest about everything and simply pointed out that he felt that he needed to move on to pastures new where he could hone his skills and become the man he is today.
Which begs the question. Is Steve Bruce really the man to lecture anyone, let alone Darren Bent, about loyalty? For the record the former Ipswich and Charlton man was at the Stadium of Light for just under a year and a half and the effort and ability he gave to the team can surely not be questioned. And in cold hard statistics his success at the Wearsiders can also not be called into question. 36 goals from 63 starts says it all.
We needn’t even go into the whole issue of how Sunderland have benefited financially from the sale of a player they helped resurrect after a soul crushing spell warming the Tottenham bench. Loyalty is a dangerous and emotive word to use at the best of times. How does one measure such a thing? Should the matter of loyalty get in the way of one’s dreams and ambitions?
Darren Bent does not in my view need a lecture on the importance of loyalty and even if he did he sure as hell wouldn’t be looking to have his former boss deliver it.
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