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The Roker Roundup: Tuesday 23rd February 2016

Here's what is shaping your SAFC world tonight - it's the Roker Roundup!

Sullivan Is A Big Sam Fan

West Ham United co-owner David Sullivan has been speaking to the club's official website ahead of this weekend's game in the capital, and he made a point of mentioning the impact that Sam Allardyce had on his club during his time there as manager.

Sullivan said:

I have said it before that I felt he did a perfectly good job during his four-year spell. He did all we asked of him and I am a fan of Sam.

He left the club in a considerably better state then when he arrived and, for that, the board were truly grateful.

He took us back into the top flight with a memorable victory in the play-off final at Wembley and then managed to cement our position in the Premier League.

I can't criticise Sam because he did a good job and I like him. But I think from both sides it was time for a change.

It's certainly something Sam doesn't get enough credit for in my view. He did a tremendous job there.

Charlie Hurley Centre Should Be Re-Opened, Say Campaigners

Sunderland's former training ground, the Charlie Hurley Centre, has been closed for quite some time and it appears that a movement is underway to try and convince the club to release the facilities for grassroot sports.

The FSF are reporting that local sports teams have been in contact with the club regarding use of the facility but were knocked back, leading to calls via the FSF to allow an area that has been closed for public use to be re-opened and used by the local community that need it.

The centre is named after the great Charlie Hurley, and his grandson has commented on the situation. He said:

Speaking on behalf of my grandad,  he would love to reopen the centre for the use of your scheme you have going on, unfortunately my grandad is now at an age where he can't fight on his behalf to reopen the centre due to illnesses he suffers with.

The great Charlie Hurley would not allow this to happen, it's a great shame they don't reopen it. If there's anything I can help you with I can represent my grandad and something can possibly be arranged.

Carroll Expected To Be Fit For Sunderland Clash

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic has revealed that our old foe Andy Carroll is expected to be fit in time for Saturday's game.

Carroll wasn't expected to recover from a groin problem but has made significant improvements this week and is likely to feature in the game at Upton Park.

'It wasn’t a big problem and as things look now he should be fit', said the Croatian.

It's a bit of a blow for Sunderland, as Carroll is a player that has troubled us many times in the past and seems to revel in his games against us. Fingers crossed he doesn't make it in time.

Bridcutt A Huge Hit At Leeds

Whilst Liam Bridcutt might have failed to live up to the hype as a Sunderland player he has taken well to life at Championship outfit Leeds United, and their manager Steve Evans cannot praise the Scotland international midfielder enough.

Bridcutt was a standout player at that level with Brighton & Hove Albion whilst under the stewardship of Gus Poyet but never quite managed to churn out the same level of consistent performances in the top flight, meaning his time at Sunderland is almost certainly over. Having suffered disappointment as a Sunderland player Bridcutt has gone to Elland Road and been consistently good, something which pleases Evans immeasurably.

He explained:

Without Diagouraga, without Bridcutt and without Carayol coming in, do they think we would be in a relegation fight come the end of the season?

I have only brought three players in and have they improved us? The answer is by some distance.

Without Bridcutt and Diagouraga alone, would we have been involved in a relegation fight?

And I think the president’s (Massimo Cellino) answer is ‘yes’ because he moved Uwe out, he allowed me to bring them in so he has identified it as well.

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