clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Fan Letters: “At last, we are rid of Donald - he has set this club back years!”

In this edition of Fan Letters, our readers hand out praise to an in-form defender, rejoice at new owners, reflect on the previous owners and ponder the chances of the return of the kitman! Got something to say? Email us at!

Sunderland v AFC Wimbledon - Sky Bet League One Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Its been a great week and a half for the club. Lots to he positive about. However, there’s one player who I think deserves so much more credit than he gets - and its Conor McLaughlin.

In his first season he was pretty abysmal for the most part. However, under Parkinson this season he looked good playing in his defence and now under Johnson, I think he’s look very solid whether at right-back or in the middle. He’s not the classiest or most gifted player but he’s doing his job very well and deserves more credit.

Also, it’s good to see Johnson hopefully getting his point across. The Shrewsbury game was awful and I think he knew that as well. Whatever he’s told them differently from that night has worked. Maybe he was lenient with them but that night did he give them the hair dryer treatment? If so he did the right thing.

His start was poor but hopefully now with momentum building we can make a push to the top 2 now. With 9 points in our next 3, I think it means a point at Portsmouth would be very good. If we end up with 5 points from the next 3 then it puts Portsmouth as a must win.

There’s a lot of work to do but I’m quietly optimistic, especially with the three games up coming to help build momentum, but it’s the run of 6 or so games after Wembley will decide if we get top 2 or playoffs. Only time will tell.


Ed’s Note [Chris]: Great shout in terms of Conor McLaughlin Max, he’s been solid when he’s been asked to step in since Lee Johnson took charge. Played a much bigger role through the injury crises at the back but has stepped up to the plate.

It has been a slow burner with Lee Johnson getting us playing the way he wanted, but I think sometimes it’s simply the effect of a couple of good results can breed confidence.

Sunderland v Fleetwood Town - Sky Bet League One
Lee Johnson
Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Its time to reflect...

I openly criticised the fan’s for turning on Ross.

I openly criticised Parkinson as the wrong man for the job.

I continuously petitioned for McGeady to be brought back into the squad and criticised the club for sending him out on loan.

I have also criticised Charlie Wyke because of his inability to find the back of the net consistently.

I have defended the actions of Donald and Co because of the state of the club when they came in, the size of the task to save the club from liquidation, and yes, I have also questioned some of their mistakes and overlooked other’s too. At the end of the day this is all about results both of the field and on it.

My support for Ross was because of the job he did with no money, hardly no player’s when he arrived, wage bills of the Premier league era, player’s who couldn’t be bothered or didn’t want to be at the club and the years of heartbreaking Saturday afternoon’s.

He stopped the rot, got rid of a lot, rebuilt with nothing. Yes he did get us a lot of draws, but we were not getting beat week in week out. We got to Wembley twice and enjoyed going back to the game’s It was an awful lot for anyone to accomplish in the first season.

What has transpired at the club since his departure has proved me right. Jack Ross should have been supported more and given more time.

Parkinson’s best achievement prior to joining Sunderland has been to rally underdogs into being surprising. Unfortunately we were not underdogs in this division and the expectations of everyone is to rise above. We have player’s who can play higher up and should be but they need to be managed and incorporated into the team effectively and he simply couldn’t do that.

Getting rid of the best player’s in the team because you can’t manage them in itself proves that he lacked confidence in his own ability which did filter through the squad. To be successful you have to be able to manage your best players and incorporate them into the team so that we can not only benefit from their ability but also teach others.

Bringing McGeady back into the fold is proving that it was wrong to keep him out whilst the rest of the squad lack creativity. Charlie Wyke has had some very poor games for us since he signed, and an awful lot of them too.

His goals per season has also not been good enough for a striker, but since McGeady came back and played to Wyke’s strengths, he has an amazing goals tally and is on course to beat Super Kevs goals in a season.

That is completely unthinkable until now. I will say although I feel I was right to criticise him he is shutting me and other critics up at the moment long may it last.

To Donald, I’d like to say thank you for taking on our club in the perilous situation it was in and saving us from liquidation. I’m sorry that things haven’t ended with us back in the Premier League but grateful that we have a club to live and fight for another chance.

To Dreyfus, I’d like to say a very big welcome to our club, invest wisely, learn from Short and Donald’s different approaches and hopefully together we can take this club back to where it belongs.

Oh... and one of those mistakes has been contracts, this needs urgent attention.

Johnny Mcvittie

Ed’s Note [Chris]: They got close to pulling it off, but wasn’t good enough and when it turned out they had all their eggs in one basket, it all went horribly wrong.

A lot of people will no doubt reflect on the last couple of years under the former owners, but I think regardless of how this season ends, we can look forward to a new way of doing things.

As for the return of Aiden McGeady - tells you everything you need to know about why Phil Parkinson was completely the wrong man to manage Sunderland.

Sunderland v Lincoln City - Papa John’s Trophy
Aiden McGeady
Photo by MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Do you think that it would be good if the new owner and his team could see their way to reinstate John Cooke to his position of kitman?

I know he was well liked by virtually everyone, and any move in this direction would prove popular with players and fans.

Alan Donkin

Ed’s Note [Chris]: My guess would be that the ship has sailed on that one. With reports of legal action I’d be surprised if this was a mistake by the former owners that could be reversed.

Dear Roker Report,

At last, we are rid of Donald. He has set this club back years.

The man has pocketed profit from selling on some fantastic young talent such as Logan Pye, Joe Hugill and the Maja saga - inept management at it’s best.

The fact that a group of people like them were allowed to run football club is a testament for just how bad the English governing bodies are at running the game in the UK. Things in the future have to change as Sunderland have been totally asset stripped by these owners, and when everything that was of any value had gone they were as well.

The powers that be have to share the wealth out from the Premier League down the lower leagues. I think we have been lucky to get such a ambitious young new owner and the future looks bright for the club.

If Donald had been still in charge there is no doubt we would have gone in to administration and the EFL would have been to blame because there rules are a joke that anyone can own a club now.

Sunderland v Shrewsbury Town - Sky Bet League One
Josh Maja
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

It pains me to say Newcastle have been well and truly shafted by the governing bodies. If it had been a London club that was going to get billionaire owners there would have not been a word said.

The system needs to change from the Premier League to the EFL, or football will not survive. It is taking it away from the fans.

Just hearing Kyril talking gives me hope at last we have the right man in the job. The fans have to back him and give him time. I mean we have twenty players out of contract at the end of the season, and it’s going to be a big rebuilding job whatever happens at the end of the season. Hopefully the next few years brings us success this club deserves.

Mark Wild

Ed’s Note [Chris]: It was always going to be the case that the longer we stayed in the third tier, the further we would regress, meaning the climb back up would inevitably get steeper year after year.

The former owners plan was all about getting back up first time with nothing to back it up if we didn’t. Still plenty of time for the new owners to keep this feel good factor going all the way to May and achieve in three months what the last lot couldn’t do in two years.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Roker Report Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Sunderland news from Roker Report