Dear Roker Report,
After posting my very strong views on twitter last night regarding the future of Ross, Donald’s suitability to be the owner we need to progress and how the players are nothing but a bunch of bottlers I have woke up this morning surprisingly with renewed hope and a stir of excitement in my expanding belly.
Make no mistake after Burton, Coventry, Pompey, Fleetwood and Southend like many many other fans I was rightly fuming, venting my anger and frustration here, there and everywhere, taking critism along the way. Perhaps over reacting to the situation we find ourselves in, perhaps not.
So why the excitement? The simple answer is we are and always will be Sunderland. Just like after a blazing row with the Mrs when the dust had settled you still love her (well most do). At 63 it’s not like I or many others have not had disappointments in the past, is it?
The past is the past we can’t alter what’s gone but we can influence what happens in the future. Now is the time to give the club, the owner, the manager and the players 100% of our support because after many rows and fall outs we still love her, her being out beloved club.
If the worst comes to the worst and we find ourselves in league 1 next season, either with or without Jack Ross, (I hope it’s with) come the 1st game of the season the fans will once again turn up in their thousands because we are Sunderland and the love for our club lasts a lifetime.
Ed’s Note [Gav]: Bang on Michael. Nobody is satisfied with the situation we’ve found ourselves in but the fact is that we need to pull in the same direction to ensure we get out of this mess. I just hope the Lads turn up on Saturday and give those of us who aren’t quite feeling it the hope they need to get ourselves up through the play-offs.
Dear Roker Report,
It seems like the vast majority of Black Cats fans fall into two camps: (1) the season has been a massive disappointment and JR should be fired if we aren’t promoted and (2) JR has done a fantastic job with what he’s been given.
Isn’t it possible that both sides are a little right and a little wrong?
On the one hand, this club was in absolute free fall when JR took over. Bare bones roster. Toxic atmosphere at the SOL. He didn’t have much of a summer transfer window. He truly had to right the ship. And for that he should be commended. One loss at home. A 5th place finish in truly a grind of a league, with a cup final to boot. Would anyone have been surprised if this was a mid table team based on the free fall?
On the other hand, he absolutely deserves some criticism. Questionable substitutions. Too many 1-0 leads squandered. Too many draws. He stated anything less than promotion would be a failure. If we aren’t promoted, he admittedly failed. But what concerns me the most is that we’re into the playoffs and he still doesn’t seem to know what his best/strongest lineup is (especially at the back 4). Compare this to teams like Luton and Barnsley who appear to have had consistent lineups most of the season, with consistently good results.
My overall grade for JR this year? B. Don’t call for his head. Assuming we don’t get promoted, give him another couple of transfer windows. Let SD bring in more help for the back line. Keep the ship steady and ask me again in year what I think. If he somehow does get the team promoted, all the criticism is moot.
Am I wrong?
Ed’s Note [Gav]: Nope, think you’re about right. I too think we need to stick by Ross a while longer yet and let him mould this team properly. There’s a lot of surgery needed this summer regardless of what league we’re in but this time around we should be refining our squad and adding quality where it’s needed rather than a complete overhaul.