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Fan Letters: Sunderland used to have a fantastic pitch - now it’s one of the worst!

Sunderland had one of the best playing surfaces in English football, and in just two years neglect has turned it into one of the worst” says RR reader Peter. Got something to say? Write to us: RokerReport@Yahoo.co.uk

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

Dear Roker Report,

Taking into consideration the way this season has gone so far, do you think it would be wise for us to still wish and hope for promotion this year? I ask because there would be nothing more heart breaking for us to struggle to go up only to come straight back down next season. Would it not be better to wait for the 20 end of contracts, added to the input of new owners to build a team strong enough to get out of this awful league with ease and be competitive in the Championship? Just food for thought.

Mick Colman

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Fair comments Mick, ones I’ve seen other people talk about on social media in the aftermath of the game on Tuesday. Personally, I’d much rather try and do this rebuild in the league above, but I can understand why people think we’d be better off hitting the reset in League One. That said, in the Championship you’re allowed to spend much more money and that could be vital. I think we’ve got worse every year we’ve been at this level, and that doesn’t exactly bode well for the future.

New Sunderland Manager Press Conference Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Watching last night’s game against Plymouth highlighted another example of the poor management of our club by the current owners. Sunderland had one of the best playing surfaces in English football, and in just two years neglect has turned it into one of the worst. When we have a small in stature playing squad that needs to try and play football a decent surface is required. The pitch encourages a team to go long which plays into many of our opposition sides hands and shows a total lack of football understanding from our owners with their petty cost cutting. This is surely an example of cutting your nose off to spite your face.

Peter Laverick

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Clearly the pitch is overdue a replacement. In the Premier League it was replaced each year, and that’s why it was always a good surface - because money was invested in keeping it good. You’re right, it’s a sign of penny-pinching, and we’re now paying the price, trying to capture some form and kick our season up the arse playing on a surface only fit for Sunday league. It’s a disgrace, really.

Sunderland v Plymouth Argyle - Sky Bet League 1 Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Has anybody asked if we get a new owner, will much change? We have signed Winchester - that does not smack of ambition. If the new owner wanted to pay large sums to get quality in, can his remaining two partners afford to keep pace with his wishes?

I think maybe not.

Roger Stokell

Ed’s Note [Gav]: We’re in the middle of a global pandemic. Fans aren’t attending games, there’s no money coming into the club - in fact they’ll be losing fortunes. So expecting them to start splashing the cash is a bit of a stretch, despite what we may think of them and their ability to run this club. There’s also the wage cap issue which we’re contending with - really, all I expect we’ll do is either bring in cheap, young players from smaller clubs or sign loanees from either the Championship or Premier League as short-term solutions to long term issues. January is a strange window and not many teams have done much business, chiefly because of the reasons I outlined above.

Sunderland v Plymouth Argyle - Sky Bet League 1 Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Hi all, hope everyone is keeping well.

I know it’s early days and I hope I am proved wrong, but I don’t think Johnson is the man to take us forward - he was the cheap option once again because he was unemployed and we wouldn’t have to pay another club compensation, if we had gone down the route of poaching a manager from another club. With regards to the signing of players I thought the idea of signings was to improve on the players we already have at our disposal or to develop younger players, again it’s early days but the signing of Winchester doesn’t fill me with much hope.

Alec Finn

Ed’s Note [Gav]: Ah... come on. Really? I’m not going to start writing off a manager after he’s been here two minutes. We’re better than that! He needs time, and lots of it.

Sunderland v Port Vale - EFL Trophy Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images