Dear Roker Report,
Got a few things to say about the proposed takeover. It seems as though there’s a lot of consternation over it.
THIS ISN’T ELLIS SHORT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The group that is looking to take over/invest in the club are not a group of guys that got lucky and made a bunch of quid like our previous owner. The Dell group is the real deal. They don’t fuck around and have the track record and bonafides to prove it. If things go as planned, this club over the next 5-10 years could finally begin to reach its long awaited potential. Potential that was only beginning to be tapped in the 1950s before scandal and dodginess ruined it and was fleetingly found in the mid-aughts with those 7th placed finishes in the Premier League.
I totally get people’s concerns, doubly so with how the last time the club was owned by an American, but this seems way better and more trustworthy than having an energy magnate in charge. After all, if this all goes through without a hitch and the club has the success people think it will, would anyone really mind if we become Arsenal 2.0 (always on the fringe of the Champion’s League and playing Europa League football)? Liverpool 2.0? Or something in between? Hell, I’ve even seen people say that we’d become Man City 2.0.
Either way, I digress. I’m happy there’s genuine excitement for the future (I’m excited too!), but let’s put the brakes on and wait and see where this take over goes, if/when it happens. For now let’s enjoy our second season in League One, keep backing the lads and hope for promotion!
Editor’s thoughts (Damian): Yes Azlynn - in the words of the incomparable Bob Dylan, times they are a-changin’. It could be said that it’s important we not get carried away with our expectations for the upcoming seasons though. Even were the takeover deal to go through without a hitch (a rare occurrence as any Sunderland fan will know) those expectations need to be managed carefully lest we succumb to overconfidence. There are few things worse in fandom than celebrating prematurely only to be dealt the crushing blow of disappointment, and made to look like an arse.
There’s no denying that a huge opportunity lies before us as a club. It’s almost ludicrous to even whisper “European football” in the same breath as Sunderland AFC in League One, yet here we are. True fans don’t follow football for foregone conclusions; everything is about possibility. To be a fan of any club is to dream of lofty heights of glory hitherto unseen. Like children fantasising about scoring for their country in some World Cup yet to come to pass, as fans we commit a large part of ourselves to those unrealistic ambitions. Sensibly, most of us not in the typical ‘top six’ of the Premier League manage to rein in our ridiculous notions of domestic and international success for the most part, but now, faced with our wildest dreams as a possibility if not a certainty, it’s harder than ever to contain.
And you know what? Good for us. Good for you. Good for every Sunderland fan. Because after all the sh*t we’ve been dragged through upside down for the last decade and beyond, don’t we deserve a little bit of hope?
Not the usual hope that we’ll get a decent run of games together, or finally buy a permanent left-back that can defend as well as cross the ball, or afford to drink in the Stadium of Light without taking out a mortgage, no.
We deserve this hope that Sunderland AFC can grow beyond the confines of Wearside; that it can aspire to become the institution we recognise it to be; that one day it can bestride the world of national and continental football like a titan. We deserve the hope to dream for once without knowing in our hearts that we’ll never make it.
So here’s to the future. We don’t control the direction Sunderland AFC moves in, but we’ll follow it wherever it goes. It just so happens that with the introduction of obscene amounts of money, that path might take us right to the top.