Toons & The Lads: Don't Call It a Tale of Two Geordies
Few rivalries are as bitter as Newcastle v Sunderland.
Even fewer fan bases are as rabid.
In recent times, though, the only real satisfaction each group gets is in schadenfreude towards the other's football fortunes. And yes, this clip from the 2014 season's end is in English:
Low bar, dude.
But realistic. Here's how the Magpies and Black Cats wrapped it last spring:
History presaged ill will between the Toons and The Lads long before football. Long considered Geordies along with residents of Newcastle and environs, Sunderland added further distance to the 13 miles between cities in the 1980s by declaring themselves Mackems instead.
The real gap, though, in on the balance sheets.
Perhaps billionaire owner Mike Ashley is finally listening. It probably helped that the Magpies were embarrassed by a resourceful Swansea side this past weekend:
So, is Florian Thaubin the answer?
Manager Steve McClaren hasn't had anything to show for the changes he's made since being hired, and with Manchester United on the docket this weekend, to be followed by Arsenal, one of the largest clubs in England will still be up against it for at least the near future.
Meanwhile, Sunderland soldiers on, but even their shirt sponsor thinks they'll be fortunate to dodge relegation this time around:
The cold light of harsh reality.
So it's been an eventful few days in the Northeast. Newcastle fans can hope. Who knows? If the cash-rich, title-barren Chicago Cubs can finally turn it around, why can't they?
But all Sunderland fans can do is pray. And, of course, rave.