The readership of Salut! Sunderland is a lot bigger, but I suspect there is little crossover. This, then, is an adapted version of posting from that other place
Everyone has guilty secrets.
One of mine is that I quite like the Cranberries, especially the voice of Dolores O’Riordan. Not always so sure about her lyrics (I could name half a dozen contemporary Irish songwriters who capture the Troubles more effectively), but you cannot have everything.
I’m hardly alone, even at my advanced years, in finding the band appealing. When my elder daughter was at Manchester Uni, the student mag announced that the release of their second album was time for undergrads to stop listening. Parents had latched on, the writer said, and the band was from now on uncool.
Well, they’re back to fulfill the date. And without realising there’d be a clash with England’s second game – the Cranberries would hardly care about these things, thanks to the hand of Thierry – I booked tickets.
Floods permitting, then, I’ll be there tonight. I’m a bit annoyed, but no more than that. Missing an England game, even one that is quite important, simply doesn’t have the same traumatic impact as missing a Sunderland match.
Pete Sixsmith, who believes watching Black Lace in concert might have the edge on some of the fare we’ve been served up so far from South Africa, will be writing about the game. Exactly when Salut! Sunderland will get round to posting his thoughts, since Pete has not yet mastered the art of doing it himself, is not yet clear, and Salut! readers may be relieved to hear that they are unlikely to be reproduced here.
That said, I am pleased with the extent and quality of Salut! Sunderland's World Cup coverage to date. That is to a large degree due to the efforts and skills of Pete, Luke Harvey, Jeremy Robson and Bill Taylor, plus the kindnesses of others. I hope readers have enjoyed what they have found here.
Standards may lapse this coming weekend, since I will not be in front of a screen long enough to keep up the rate of postings we’ve managed so far, and I must therefore apologise of behalf of the Cranberries, and Italy (to which I will be making quick visit afterwards) for the inconvenience and disappointment likely to be caused.
Among the features to look out for when normal service resumes is a third World Cup Who Are You?, with a Slovenian ex-player, who knows several of his country’s squad, already lined up to answer our questions.
But tonight, it's Dolores and her chums and tomorrow, it's another little foray into Italy. The cat has been left food at various appropriate spots around the garden, so shold do without us quite well for one night.
And yes, in the meantime, come on England. But if you really want to know what lies behind my choice of the Paraguay flag, you'll just have to explore Salut! Sunderland.