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Fan Letters: Sunderland fan Eric is “absolutely appalled” at Cookie’s departure

In today’s fan letters, Colin is unimpressed with Taylor, Eric is angry about John Cooke’s exit, Donkin has words for the players, Dave wants Big Sam and Stan wants the Cowleys. Let us know what you think...!

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Aston Villa v Sunderland - Villa Park
John Cooke, Sunderland’s long serving kit manager
Photo by Mike Egerton - PA Images via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

After the euphoria of Parky going, I thought right, we are playing the team 3rd of bottom with the worst defence in the league, lets go 3-4-3 and attack them. I was even happy to see Graham, Wyke and Grigg up front. I also would have said to them - do not go over the half way line, play high and pressurise the defenders. At least with flick ons we might find a teammate. We would still have 7 to cover defensively against a very poor team.

What happens, Wyke and Embleton up front. Embleton spent more time in our half and I think he forgot he was on as a striker. After the first half I would have brought subs on at halftime. Scowen, covers a lot of ground but he never threatens, never creates opportunities and never looks like scoring. Power and Leadbitter are too similar. Hume gets into decent positions but heads off without looking and overruns the ball all the time. It was crying out for McFadzean. Maguire is too similar to whats on pitch, put some pace on.Both goalkeepers are crap, whose the coach.

What happens, exactly the same as Parky. He obviously doesn’t have a clue. Lastly, I don’t see any leadership on pitch or off the pitch, nobody shouting, encouraging and laying into players.

I can’t wait to see what happens to team selection when we play the bottom team this weekend!

I’m Sunderland through and through but this is crippling me.

Colin Husband

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Cheers for your letter Colin. You’re absolutely right, Tuesday’s game was basically more of the same, wasn’t it. Overall, Andrew Taylor wasn’t willing to make great changes to Phil Parkinson’s way of setting up a team, despite bringing in Embleton and changing formation late in the game. It was a stark demonstration of that the next manager will have a big job on his hands finding more creativity in our attacking play, and that we may have to make some changes in personnel.

Sunderland v Burton Albion - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I am absolutely appalled at the decision to make kitman (and former player) John Cooke redundant. Cooke is a legend at Sunderland and always remained as many a manager moved on. If the new manager wants to get off on the right foot with fans then reinstating “Cookie” is a good way to start.

I suspect Jim Rodwell may have something to do with this decision. I look forward to the announcement of his redundancy.

Eric Bowers

Ed’s Note [Rich]: I think the vast majority of fans have been shocked by the news that the club has made Cookie redundant - a man who has been at the heart of the club for decades. Only those closely involved will know exactly what been going on behind the scenes, but it certainly can’t help with morale amongst the players.

The fact that nothing as simple as tribute to his service has been given by the club has definitely eaten into some of the good will generated recently by the dismissal of Phil Parkinson and the impending arrival of the new owners.

I personally hope that, if and when they do take over, Mr Louis-Dreyfus’ team try to put this right.

Dear Roker Report,

I’m a veteran supporter. My first game was on Boxing Day 1970 v Boro - I’m originally from rugby town St Helens, and had never been to a game before but loved it and never stopped.

I can’t believe what's going on - I definitely would bring McGeady back, and offer big Sam whatever he wanted to take control til the end of the season.

McGeady wouldn’t piss him about.

Dave Walker

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Alright there, Dave. I love Big Sam but I’m not sure he’s in the running this time round, especially with the reported incoming Sporting Director overseeing him. But whoever does come in, he’s got to find a way to get more quality in the final third and that’s one thing we all know Aiden McGeady can bring. Let’s hope they can get him match fit as soon as possible.

Portsmouth v Sunderland - Checkatrade Trophy - Final - Wembley Stadium Photo by Adam Davy/PA Images via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

As a Sunderland supporter living in Lincoln, I would give the job to Danny Cowley.

He and his brother did a wonderful job at Lincoln city, they even brought the whole city together. He went to Huddersfield to better himself, he saved them from relegation which wasn’t easy, and then got unfairly sacked.

He will unite not just the team but the whole of Sunderland.

Get him in! I am sick of taking all this stick down here in Lincoln.

Stan Dye

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Thanks for your letter, Stan. It’s interesting as a few of the Roker Report lads also live in Lincoln, and they’ve said much the same thing about the Cowleys. We need progressive management who are both able to get the first team playing and fit within a wider footballing structure that may soon look very different to what we’ve seen at Sunderland before.

If it is Danny Cowley who gets the top job, I just hope he and Nicky can bring a bit of positivity with them to the Stadium of Light.

Dear Roker Report

Unless you conduct yourself professionally on and off the field on a day to day basis, analysing your mistakes and misgivings, taking responsibility, you will not improve as a player or be applauded by Sunderland AFC.

I fear this team is about to be dismantled when the next manager comes in.


Ed’s Note [Rich]: Fundamental change is needed at Sunderland AFC, Donkin, from top to bottom, or we’ll never get out of this league. That includes the attitude of the players.

Keep the Faith!

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