Dear Roker Report,
I don’t believe in constantly sacking managers. However, in 2011, I wanted Steve Bruce to go. He’d needlessly picked a fight with supporters and from that you do not return. Subsequently when the team were performing worse than they had under him my justification was I make no apology for wanting better for my club.
Since I was 9 my love for Sunderland has been unwavering and throughout the ups and downs faith and hope gave me belief that you just have to wait long enough to get what you deserve. I have a mindset that this is my club not the owner’s and I will outlast them. I am appreciative that supporting a team isn’t always about success, it’s contributing and being part of something. There have been bad times before, hurt and uncertainty, but for me it’s never felt like this.
Now, I just don’t know where we are going. I have no trust in Stewart Donald. I have no confidence in Phil Parkinson getting the best out of this group of players. I despair about what the future looks like and don’t know how the multitude of problems can be fixed. I have long subscribed to the idea it’s the hope I can’t stand but actually today it’s not, it’s the disappointment. How has it got to this?
I feel conflicted because I so want to love them but the thing is, there’s nothing left I recognise. I want better for my club and I make no apology for that.
Ed’s Note [Tom]: Hi Rachel, you’re definitely not alone with those thoughts. I think your note about the disappointment being unbearable rather than the hope is really well put. Fans have every right to bemoan an absolute shambles when they see it; the only way we can make our displeasure known is to vote with our voices or our feet. It’s not being fickle, it’s caring about an institution that’s part of our lives.
Dear Roker Report,
I have to agree with those that think Phil Parkinson was the wrong choice as manager.
His record is not nearly good enough for what we should be aiming for.
Ross had more in his favour on the face of it though we appeared to be going backwards with him just not as fast as we have with Parkinson.
However it is players that are more important than the manager...recruitment policy has been a total disaster for years now...both buying and selling...player wage management equally bad.
This needs to change NOW and is Donald up to this job without considerable help? Sunderland are a far bigger club than he has experience of and its telling.
So the question is ...which is better...pay what it costs to get rid of Parkinson now and recruit a higher level managerial set up as we are limited by FA rules as to how much we can spend on players anyway.
Or give Parkinson the money we are allowed to spend and give him the rest of the season to prove he can do the job of getting us promoted.
My gut feeling is that the former is the better long term plan but it does depend who would be available. Roy Keene with Phillips as No 2 would be my choice.
Ed’s Note [Tom]: Hi Ronnie, I imagine the question you posed about whether to stick or twist with Parkinson is one going through Donald’s head at present. I think any managerial appointment brings a sense of direction; a big name or well-respected manager on the up suggest the club are being ambitious. Does Phil Parkinson fit into either of those categories? In League One, should Sunderland be appointing what many would argue is an ultra-safe option? Sunderland have thrived with manager’s full of confidence, gusto, and an ability to get the players pulling in the same direction. Sunderland at present feel devoid of all those characteristics.