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Fan Letters: “Go get him!” - Should Sunderland bring Roy Keane back in as manager?

RR reader Steve thinks the solution to all of Sunderland’s problems is in re-hiring Roy Keane as manager. Would you get behind an appointment like that? Do you think Parkinson is going anywhere? Email us:!

Sunderland v Bolton Wanderers - Premier League Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

There seems to be a body of opinion that Saturday’s game at home to Blackpool represented an improvement. Like faint praise that just shows how badly the team are now performing. Unfortunately I’ve had to miss a few games recently but caught Saturday’s game.

We set up as if we were playing Man City. There were never enough attackers in their box, the midfield didn’t use the ball well even when they got it passing back and sideways far too often ( partly because of a lack of movement with Watmore and Hume slight exceptions), and the defence seemed slow and overstretched at times against what in reality was a poor Blackpool attack. Man City would’ve had a cricket score.

It’s easy to blame the manager. Too easy. If anyone hasn’t seen the truth of the evidence of the last few years let me spell it out. Constantly changing the manager is not the answer, It simply compounds the problems. We have had some dreadful managers at Sunderland over the last 10 years or so and some had to go but some shouldn’t have. In recent history we should still have Jack Ross.

I want to defend Stewart Donald for saving the club. People lash out in their pain after yet another inept display from the team but we would now be in a far worse position without him, see Bury or Bolton or many other clubs deep in debt and heading for disaster. When debt becomes impossible to pay back there is only one outcome. We have avoided this. As far as I can see he’s only made two real mistakes. Selling Maja, even though he compensated by getting Grigg which frankly in this league should’ve worked, and sacking Ross.

I wasn’t convinced about Parkinson and I’m even less convinced now but he has in the past shown he can do the job. He has to be given at least till the end of the season to prove it. Everyone can see the team needs pace, flair and skill this is easier said than done but if teams like Sheffield United and Wycombe can play the way they are with the footballers they possess so can we. Parkinson has to make this happen. He has to galvanise this bunch of players and inject some energy into the team. He could start by attacking rather than defending at least at home and probably away too. If we don’t go up someone else should get the Summer window.

Peter Carney

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Like you I was less than impressed by Saturday’s performance. The only real improvement was that we didn’t get beat for once. I think that we’ve been conditioned to accept mediocrity and on the back of so many poor performances, scraping a draw at home against Blackpool feels like we’ve achieved something.

Until we start getting back into the habit of winning games, and until our manager changes his own attitude, we’ll continue to struggle.

Sunderland v Blackpool - Sky Bet League One Photo by Alex Dodd - CameraSport via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Like so many long standing supporters of SAFC I despair at the situation we are in at the moment. It’s not just happened, but is the result of years of neglect and mismanagement at the very heart of our famous club. Trying to do things on the cheap; like buying league one players, means that’s exactly where you end up.

Isn’t there someone who understands the basic economics of better players = better results = bigger gates = more money. In other words, it can be a self funding model.

How to fix it might be a million dollar question (quite literally, if DELL puts his money in?), but one thing is for sure..... We need to start by bringing in a manager who commands respect, who knows how to win, is well conncted, who can motivate and attract better players, and basically can fire everyone up, on the pitch, in the stands, and in the board room. So, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE go and get Roy Keane.

For the doubters, please consider this... Roy first came to our club in a similar (but not as bad) situation and quickly took hold of the players and staff. He has vast experience on and off the pitch, attracting players who wouldn’t even have be on our most optimistic wish list, instilled a winning mentality, achieving the highest points ever in winning promotion and would have strengthened our position even more if not for the intervention of a new owner who systematically set about destroying our club.

Roy speaks highly of his time at Sunderland, still feels he has unfinished business there, and has recently said he would love a chance to get back into club management. What are we waiting for! Go get him !!

If the current owners still worry about the economics, then just consider who the gate receipts would go through the roof if he agreed to come back?


Steve Dryden

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Whilst the romantic in me would love to see a return to the days when we stormed the Championship and had a man in charge who commanded respect and set the highest standards, I don’t think that there are many club owners who would want the headache of working with Keane and would prefer instead to take a safe option.

I suspect that’s why Roy has not held a management job in almost nine years.

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