Power & Pitch Craic…

After making an impressive debut against Luton, Max Power has been chatting about the set up at Sunderland and how happy he is to be here. “I’ve seen many good signs already, there’s some similarities with the Wigan side I played in last season,” he said. “I’ve been really impressed. I like his [Ross] calmness. I like the way he wants players to express themselves, to take the ball in areas of the pitch where [there’s danger]. I’ve played under managers who don’t like that and want it up the pitch. We played some really good stuff at Luton and we can only get better. I’d only been in the building 24 hours, I’ll get fitter and better. I’m really looking forward to the season. Like at Wigan, we’ve got a good passing side. There’s a lot of bravery on the pitch. It’s not easy to play that way, to not pump it long. That first goal, we moved it through the lines. In my first year at Wigan it took a bit of time to gel, so I think we’ll get stronger as the season goes on. I had a look in the treatment room when I arrived and there’s some really good players to come back, too. I didn’t realise how young Bali was. At 16 I didn’t have a hair on my body! I was just coming out of school, nowhere near the first team. I was really impressed with him, he’s got a really good future ahead of him. Lee Cattermole has bags of experience, I managed to speak to him on the coach down here, he loves the club. Chatting to him, I remember speaking to players at Wigan who were used to playing at a higher level, like Stephen Warnock. He’d played for Liverpool, Aston Villa, but he’d say now getting promoted with Wigan was one of his favourite seasons. Forget about the division, it’s nice winning football matches, and that’s what I’ve come here to do, to put smiles on fans faces and get promoted. Anyone knows me from Wigan knows I played in every position on the pitch. I was a bit of a utility man at times and sometimes that hasn’t worked in my favour. I’m a person who is willing to do anything for the team. I do like to get forward, although it was tough moving further forward on Saturday as you’re tiring. It’s nice doing that the other way round! But when I’m fully match fit, I’d like to get in the goals this season.”

In other news, Jack Ross has explained his decision to lengthen the SOL pitch to its maximum size, in contrast to Simon Grayson and Steve Bruce, who did the opposite and took it to the smallest dimensions. Ross explained: “When I took the job I was told that the pitch had been narrowed and shortened, I made quite a quick decision on it. It was more for the groundsman really, he needed to know! I just thought that in this league this season, I expect us to be on the front foot in games. My teams have always played with good width one way or another, so that makes it advantageous for us. I was kicking myself though because in amongst everything that’s been going on, I forgot to tell the players. In the meeting on the Monday after the game I told them and a couple of said “I thought that!” In my first job at Alloa I narrowed it, because we were a small team in the big league. But in this league, I want that width and length.”

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