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Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League

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Fan Letters: It’s time for football fans to unite and say, ‘no more!’

As fans get closer to getting back into the stadiums, is it time the balance of power swung back in our favour? Email us:

Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Going away a bit from the football side, well done to all the team for making the playoffs but the big row that’s bubbling over how some owners are bleeding the clubs dry really strikes a cord. It’s not just the “big six” who have been shafted and you only have to look at the fiasco with SD. He was allowed to buy our club, when the EFL knew he was going to use our parachute money to pay for it. He took us to the brink and luckily found a new owner/investor that will now hopefully treat our club and supporters with the respect we deserve. Buying a football club is like the Klondike gold rush for these owners. They look at stripping assets and screwing as much money as they can from the clubs they buy. To the supporters of Sunderland, Charlton, Bury, Coventry etc we all feel just as aggrieved as the “big six”, it is rife in football. The EFL who rubber stamped this trend of owners should be disbanded, they are a disgrace and what they have allowed to happen is nigh on criminal. To a man, every football supporter should be united and say “no more”.

Sam Lucas

Ed’s Note [Martin]: Totally agree Sam. Football’s a very different ‘industry’ to the one I started supporting. We need to get to a point where fan-owned clubs are mandated, and the controlling stake is held by the people that matter. Us. We’ve seen over the past 12 months just how important fans are to the game as a whole, but the Superleague fiasco was a real kick in the teeth for all football fans – not just the top clubs. I have a feeling this is the start of the uprising in some respects. It’s been bubbling away for a couple of decades, but enough is enough.

Manchester United v Liverpool - Premier League
Manchester United fans made their feelings clear at the weekend
Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Thank you for the opportunity to vent my spleen about my frustration at team selection. It may get no better as we get closer to the abyss.

Simply put, with all the hype about Wyke, I personally fear that if he does return we will revert to the one trick horse tactics of lumping it forward from the goalkeeper, or from the wings to one man. Surely that tactic has well and truly past its sell-by date. Yet I fear old streaky will revert to a system that has been the root cause of our current predicament.

Against Plymouth we witnessed opportunities, shots on goal coming from multiple players across the front line, and midfield. Stewart still maintained the aerial threat. All of this came from departing from Johnson’s damaging focus on Wyke alone. Not only did we see the value of Maguire, Stewart and Jones leading the line, but it seemed to raise the games of those around them.

If Johnson goes back to his original tactics, the saying about madness, doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result, will be his lasting epitaph to our demise, and hopefully his!

Jeff Ledger (Durham)

Ed’s Note [Martin]: It’ll be really interesting to see what he does, won’t it Jeff. To be fair to him, Wyke was the only fit striker he had until the end of March, and it’s a tough call to drop someone scoring the goals Wyke has in favour of an untested player. However, Wyke is a limited player who limits how we play. He’s done well this season, but ideally, he’d be an option. I know Marco Gabbiadini got some stick for saying we had a problem in that Wyke could only score one type of goal (that being a one-touch finish in the penalty box) but it is a major issue because we have had no alternative. Stewart’s performance on Saturday showed what we can get when we have a different approach upfront and the team benefited. Ultimately, between now and the end of the season, the only thing that matters is winning – past form is irrelevant. Hopefully, Johnson goes with the likes of Jones, Maguire, Gooch and Stewart upfront – it could be the thing that makes or breaks the season.

Plymouth Argyle v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One
Stewart impressed on Saturday – should he take Wyke’s place for the play offs?
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Re. the Sunderland squad – Lee Johnson should be putting out his best team for playoffs, and that includes Chris Maguire. He has been our missing link, that’s why is he classed as our king! Let him play behind Stewart and he will provide the goals and quality with Aiden. Plus put young Hawkes on bench! If we make final the best 11 must be picked, and Lee Johnson has to put SAFC first, not his pride, or it will be his downfall.

Richard Downey

Ed’s Note [Martin]: It’s important to acknowledge we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes, and there will be a multitude of other factors influencing team selection that we’re not privy to. Lee Johnson will be picking the team he believes can win every week – it’s nonsensical for him not to. Now, whether we agree with that or not is a different matter!

Plymouth Argyle v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One
Bring back the king!
Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Why oh why does Chris Maguire not get games ? Has he fallen out with Lee Johnson?Please don’t repeat Parkinson v McGeady fiasco. He is too good to be put on the back burner. He gets paid to play for SAFC.

Sharad Trivedy

Ed’s Note [Martin]: Agree 100% Sharad. Thankfully, he got on at the weekend and made an impact. Something must have gone on off the pitch, as it makes no sense to ignore him to the extent Johnson has. Let’s hope he’s back in favour now – he could be massive for us.


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