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The Roker Report Draft Extravaganza: Part Two

Bobby Kerr lifts the FA Cup, but where does he land in our draft? You might be surprised when you read on.
Bobby Kerr lifts the FA Cup, but where does he land in our draft? You might be surprised when you read on.

Yesterday, we revealled the 18 players who made it into the first three rounds of our all-time fantasy Sunderland draft. It's time for another installment as we run through rounds 4 to 6!

To catch up with what this is all about and the rules, you can CLICK HERE.

Round Four

#19 Gary Rowell (Dan Williams)

But who will Porterfield (the last pick of round 3) he be teeing up? With my first choice strikers out of action, my team will be boasting Gary Rowell in the famous number nine shirt. Hat-trick hero against the Mags, 102 goals in the red and white stripes, banging them in for me from now on.

#20 Kevin Ball (Chris Weatherspoon)

My team needs some spine, who's got more than Kevin Ball? Not the prettiest or most able footballer by a looooong shot, but heart and determination in abundance. Breaking up attacks and scything down namby pamby bastards will be his role, as I deploy him in a deep-lying central midfield role.

Also, following the time he gave me and three mates a talk about life and all it's pitfalls on his front lawn at 1.15am one New Years Day (I'll be amazed if I've never mentioned this story before), he gets the captain's armband too.

#21 Johnny Mapson (David Boyle)

Its about time I concentrated on the rear-end, oo-er, of my side and selected a man to stand between the sticks. With Montgomery and Doig both already accounted for I have opted for Johnny Mapson, the first choice goalkeeper for the lads during the "Team of all Talents" era, an astute goalkeeper with fantastic positional awareness and a unique

style of catching the ball with one arm over the other at the side of his body. Mapson even turned down advances from Matt Busby to join Manchester United following the war. If he was good enough for Sir Matt he's good enough for me!

#22 Darren Bent (Michael Graham)

With all this defensive talent, it is time I got myself a striker to win me games. I am astonished to see that (aside from those taken in the opening two picks of the draft) my top choice is still available. I don't want to pluck some name from another century for this role. I want someone who I know could transcend eras and score goals no matter what. That man is Darren Bent. An individual I have no respect for, but one I'd be willing to put up with for his goals. Proven and consistent scorer at the top level, and when he scored against Switzerland in 2010, he became the first Sunderland man to score for England since Len Shackleton in 1954. Fine footballing credentials.

#23 Jim Baxter (Simon Walsh)

Well, I was worried for a moment my next pick would have gone by now, but it appears I've gotten lucky and am proud to welcome to Team Walsh, the finest footballer ever produced by Scotland, no, not Craig Gordon as many would have you believe, its 'Slim' Jim Baxter to take a starring role in my midfield.

#24 Johnny Campbell (Karl Jones)

My 4th round pick is Johnny Campbell. In addition to going all-out-attack early on, I'm keen on establishing a winning mentality, and with league titles complementing more than 150 goals for the Lads he'll do nicely.

Round Five

#25 John Auld (Karl Jones)

To kick off Round 5 his captain from that two-time league winning team, John Auld, begins the plan for defensive dominance as well as goals galore.

#26 Thomas Sorensen (Simon Walsh)

Right, well this one might seem a bit of a reach, but with Monty and Mapson off the board I'm going to select our best keeper of the last 25 years, Tommy Sorensen. 12 keepers need to be selected, so I might as well dip in and grab one of the best we've had before all we're left with is Iain Hesford and Kelvin Davis.

#27 Chris Turner (Michael Graham)

Before I go any further, I need to complete the spine of my team and that means a goalkeeper. I considered Shay Given for this but, since the rules dictate that the player drafted is the one who played for Sunderland, I am not sure the 19-year-old version would be a sensible choice. So I have plumped for Chris Turner. Like Given, he was a touch on the short side but had enough quality to earn a move to Manchester United. I can't envisage he'd have much to do behind Hurley and Todd, but I'd back him to do it well.

#28 Hughie Wilson (David Boyle)

With my goalkeeper secured in the previous round it is about time I work my way up the spine of my side, starting with a central defender. I've opted for Hughie Wilson. Hughie has always intrigued me for a number of reasons; he was widely regarded as the greatest defenders of his generation, he played in SAFC's first ever league game, also featured in the first ever game at Roker Park and was the first Sunderland player to be sent off, earning a dismissal against Stoke in 1886 but mainly because of his unique, one-handed throw in which he perfected to such affect that the FA were forced to change the law. I'd love to see that in action!

#29 Billy Hughes (Chris Weatherspoon)

Right, big Davey H up top should weigh in with plenty of goals, but I can't be relying on him all the time. With a destroyer in the shape of Bally already plugging gaps, what this side needs is a goalscoring midfielder. Ladies and gentlemen I present to you Mr Billy Hughes. 81 goals makes him Sunderland's highest ever goalscoring midfielder (unless we count Raich as a middle man, but sod that), and 4 goals alone in that famous cup run of '73 makes me wonder why he hasn't been snapped up sooner. He's Scottish, yes, but everyone has their faults.

#30 Stan Anderson (Dan Williams)

A defender with over 400 appearances for the Lads who also earned two England caps in his time at the club, Mr Stan Anderson. Captaining the side for many a year between 1952-1963, he also went on to captain the Mags and Boro. 31 goals from defence also bodes well for my team's goalscoring ambitions.

Round Six

#31 Gary Bennett (Dan Williams)

To compliment him at the back, another monster in there in the form of Gary Ernest Bennett. I had to try my best not to go with instinct and choose Paul McShane, but I managed it, and 'Benno' is the perfect foil for Anderson, strengthening the defence while, again, adding the occasional goal for good measure.

#32 Len Ashurst (Chris Weatherspoon)

My heart skipped a beat there when you said a defender with over 400 appearances for the lads, but mercifully you didn't nick my choice.

Fleshing out my side's indomitable spine then, first choice in the wide is Len Ashurst. A dominating left-back whose 452 appearances puts him third in Sunderland's all time list and signifies his longevity, he's a man who'll join Ball in keeping my lads in check should the need arise. Ashurst was one of the few in world football who remained unbowed by a certain Brian Clough, while his displeasure with Jim Baxter's lack of defensive effort is a sure sign that my defence will be taking no nonsense from any of you!

#33 Willie Watson (David Boyle)

For this round I have opted for Willie Watson who made over two-hundred appearances for the lads as a ball winning midfielder with impeccable vision for a pass. When the midfield general wasn't playing football he was busy playing that other sport that sometimes occurs over the summer when it isn't pissing it down, cricket, and made twenty-three test match appearances for England!

#34 Stephane Sessegnon (Michael Graham)

I am amazed he has been left unpicked for so long, so I gleefully gobble him up now. A player well known to us all, who can inject some pace, magic, and unpredictability into the side. Hence, Stephane Sessegnon becomes the first member of the current squad to be drafted.

#35 Joe Bolton (Simon Walsh)

Well, Sess was also on my list, but I didn't fancy taking him so early. I'm dipping back in to defence with my next pick and taking Joe Bolton, a former Cult Hero on our own site, tough-tackler and winner of the first SAFC Player Of The Year Award.

#36 Bobby Kerr (Karl Jones)

Okay, seeing as ball-winners are quickly becoming the must-have toy of this draft, I'll start my midfield building with Bobby Kerr. He's as determined as they come; mere setbacks and leg breaks can't stop him lifting silverware.


That completes rounds three to six. Tomorrow we'll have seven through nine. You can also check our rounds one to three if you missed them HERE

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