Dear Roker Report,
I’m willing to start a debate on this, but I’ve changed my mind - get a drum in the Roker End.
Recently I was fortunate enough to attend a Northern Ireland game at Windsor Park & by god, what an atmosphere they generate. The place gets bouncing for a stadium with open sides where noise just dissipates, but the thud of the drum keeps pushing the songs, time & time again.
When I found myself at Wembley, head pounding, hands shaking & stomach churning, the second half atmosphere just didn’t appear, the songs were disjointed, out of time or just not started at all, all whilst the Pompey cow bell rang loud & proud.
It all completely changed my mind about instruments at football games. The Barry Horns are iconic amongst Welsh fans - a brass instrumental section that sets the tone. England have something similar, too. Whilst most of our fans are desperate to say it’s ‘tinpot’ or whatever, you can’t deny that atmosphere has been lacking at times, and it’s not hard to see that sides who use drums or trumpets or whatever else they fancy rarely struggle to generate an atmosphere.
I think it’s about time it gets considered, or tried, to stimulate an atmosphere that all too easily dissipates when the going gets tough & the lads need a boost. You never know, we might just end up nailing it.
Ed’s Note [TA]: It’s an interesting point of discussion, isn’t it? I thought the flag display yesterday was absolutely superb, and the fact that fans want to go above and beyond to try and help the Lads claw their way over the finish line makes me feel immensely proud to be a Sunderland fan.
That being said, there is a sizeable chunk of the fanbase who dislike the idea of drums and flags and anything else they consider to be culpable of creating a ‘manufactured atmosphere’.
Ultimately, I’d agree that ideas offered to improve atmosphere should definitely be considered. The Red and White Army have done a tremendous job thus far in boosting fan input, and I’m sure they would canvass opinion in order to gauge the interest in drums.
I’ll be interested to see how this pans out!