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Fan Letters: What happened to Sunderland’s ill-fated FPP takeover?

In today’s Fan Letters, Colin argues that the club needs a change in ownership as soon as possible, and Joe wants to know what happened to prevent FPP from buying the club? What do you think? Email us:!

Sunderland AFC

Dear Roker Report,

We have a major problem at our club at the moment and one that only spells disaster unless it is addressed.

We have an owner that doesn’t want to sell but does not have financial backing to take the club forward. He will only sell to another bidder as long he retains some form of control of the club. He is a good guy I have no doubt about that but his lack of knowledge around footballing matters coupled with his lack of spare change is going to be the death of this club. I believe its not what he will want to happen but there will be no choice when attendances tumble and income streams dwindle away.

Season ticket sales for the coming season show people now have lost all hope in this guys ability to take the club further. We have a manager the fans do not really relate to (no disrespect meant to him) and I can only see one thing this coming season happening.

We will struggle in a tough league with below average players with an average attendance of 15 to 20k which in turn put the club into a position of financial meltdown meaning only one thing: Administration.

We need to change it NOW before it’s to late. I do not have the answers but this club is creaking at the seems and I fear the foundations are about to collapse around us all in the next 12 months.

Player wise: our previous goalkeeper must have saved us 15 to 20 points last season. We do not have any pace in the squad. We have no strikers capable of getting 15 goals a season. Letting Ozturk leave baffled me.

We need new owners and Stuart Donald has to step aside and let them come in and take us forward. At the moment everything smells of failure this has to change and a new owner with new ideas etc will bring around this change.

He bought the club for virtually nothing taking into account the Parachute money he used (another story altogether) and he should now take a small increase in his investment and leave. He has tried his best but it didn't work out.

I was involved with Sunderland when the club was buzzing with Peter Reid etc. and players wanted to be here and the stadium was rocking on a Saturday. And that was again without any form of success. Owners and a manager can create that but what we have now is not what will ever get us back into the Championship let alone the Premier League.

Suffering as always.

Colin Lynch

Ed’s Note [Tom]: Hi Colin, hope you’re safe and well. It certainly does feel like the current ownership’s time at the club is all but done - I do think Donald is keen to sell, though, he has been since over a year ago. The issue is that his valuation is just too high. My only concern is if the current owners fob us off onto some other group who might be even worse. I look at Wigan’s plight at present and that could easily have been Sunderland. Worrying times as we’re stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Sunderland v Wycombe Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

When the Yanks came to town we all thought good times ahead but what happened to the take over? Nobody has given us the reason [it collapsed] and why the 9 mill loan? Why did the Yanks form a new company and do all of the necessary checks to do the takeover, then, wham, no deal and we are all scratching our heads - why it did not happen?

There has to be people out there who know what happened, but why the silence? I would have thought the fans deserved to know the reason it did not happen. Just the plain old truth will do, not a pass the buck story because us fans will not accept anything but the truth. We all should have known when the owner of non-league club, Eastleigh, who in real terms is not a very rich man, wanted to buy our club - the only reason I can come up with him doing that is to make a lot of money out of us and do a runner.

Also, last bit, what happened to Sartori?


Ed’s Note [Tom]: You’re right, Joe, I think fans are deserving of the truth - unfortunately I don’t think anyone knows what that is. My best guess would be that FPP were really thorough with their due diligence and weren’t happy with something. Furthermore, we’ve been promised Sartori’s money for what feels like an eternity, yet it doesn’t seem to have ever materialised. I don’t blame Donald for wanting to make money from a sale, I do blame him for seemingly shying away from the spotlight after the Playoff Final heartbreak, and all the subsequent issues that have emerged from the club since then. Entirely disappointing.

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