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Sunderland v Lincoln City - Sky Bet League One Play-off Semi Final 2nd Leg

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Fan Letters: “Do you love yourself or not?”

Loads of opinion on Lee Johnson, a letter from Botswana and an idea for a memorial match for the victims of Covid-19 are all in today’s mixed mailbag.

Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

This transfer window is the most important for years for the club. For the first time in years this club has the resources and set up to succeed. We could look back in the years to come and say this was the turning point in the clubs fortune. Starting this season and getting promoted will be even harder than last. Big decisions are being made now Wyke is going his thirty goals have to be replaced and we cannot let McGeady go, give him what he wants. I suggest get rid of Grigg for free and free up his wages for McGeady.

This season we have to recruit players who want to play for the club. Sanderson is prime example the lad loved it here last season, we can’t go wrong if we are looking to recruit players of this character. Johnson has talked the talk about the style he wants to play and if he can repeat the first half performance against Lincoln we will surely get promoted. The fans this season will only expect performances like the one against Lincoln anything else will not be tolerated.

Hopefully things will get back to normal soon and we can pack the stadium again to watch a winning team. After this pandemic we have lost a lot of fans god bless them all and in there memory let’s get this club back to where it belongs. A memorial friendly to remember all our fans who we lost due to covid and all the funds going to the NHS what a gesture that would be if the club decided to do this.

Mark Wild

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Nice to hear from you again as always, Mark. I agree that this is a crucial window, securing McGeady for one more year has to be a priority, and that offloading Grigg is important too. I also love the idea of a memorial friendly to raise money for NHS charities once it’s safe to have a full house back in the SOL; so many of our loved ones have suffered and many of us have experienced tragic losses and I’m sure that if the club go down this route we’d collectively raise tens of thousands for good causes.

Sunderland v Lincoln City - Sky Bet League One Play-off Semi Final 2nd Leg Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Over here in Botswana, you tell your friends and family you support Sunderland AFC, they all burst into a tumult of jeers and sniggers. One friend of mine even uttered ‘The fact that you support Sunderland has me questioning whether you love yourself or not?’ Whether I love myself or not - I dont know. One thing I do know is that you can never remove the fur of the black cat from me - although it is currently quite uncomfortable to have!

To touch briefly on the state of the club currently, as a fan I almost obliged to look forward to the next season with optimism. Do I think Lee Johnson is the man to carry us into the land of honey and milk (otherwise known as the Championship) - NO! But maybe a more eye-soothing brand of football could alter my views on him. The one thing that had me fuming in the Playoff Semi final second leg was the launching of long balls to Wyke, who barely won his aerial duels, rather than feeding the ball to Maguire and McGeady to stir up the magic we all know they are capable of conjuring up.

Goat Ama

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Cheers for writing in, Goat Ama, it’s great to hear from Sunderland fans around the world. Your friend’s question is one I think most of us have asked ourselves many times over the years, I definitely did after the playoff semis. But as you know, the love of Sunderland AFC transcends all rational explanation. I personally think that we’ll get that longed-for promotion to the Championship next season once Johnson has got our new squad together, and that we’ll play better football as he’ll is able to fully implement his fabled “philosophy”.

Sunderland v Lincoln City - Sky Bet League One Play-off Semi Final 2nd Leg Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Lee Burge is nowhere near good enough for a consistently good side, too many silly mistakes in my opinion, give Patterson a chance or get someone in who can command the area with confidence, confidence is built from the back i.e., Sorrenson, Ball, etc.

Geofferey Metcalfe

Ed’s Note [Rich]: I absolutely agree with what you say about Patterson, Geofferey, it was great to see him signing a new contract at the club, I definitely expect another ‘keeper to be signed over the summer, and I hope that there’s real competition for that number 1 jersey next season. But I also think Burge comes in for a lot of unjustified stick and he had a decent season overall.

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

Dear Roker Report,

Hello Lads. Dont think you printed any of my mails stating from day one that LJ should not be at SAFC, people all have their veiws but don’t look at LJ through the heart or the love of SAFC.

I am using my head and as i stated from day one LJ is not the man for the job because the fact is he will only sign as he has up to now players from league 3 and below as he has proved from day one the reason for this is all his contacts in football are all in div 3 and below so with this in mind thats where we will stay.

Also he has been in football for 9 years and his achievements = manager of the month, twice - wow wee. Also, the fall in the last 10 games where promotion was in his hands. HE blew it he talks a good story, but fails to back it up with results end of story .

These veiws unfortunateley are from the head and stats. Not from the heart.

Jarvis n William

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Thanks for writing in again, Jarvis. I totally get that we’ll all have our own views on whether Lee Johnson is the right man for Sunderland, and mine is that we need to give him a chance to get his own squad together and have them playing his way. We saw with our own eyes the general improvement in the style and quality of the football that Phil Parkinson’s squad played when LJ came in to replace him. We were more fluid and effective in our attacking, and with Sanderson at the back we were flying. As disappointing as it was, I think the reasons why we didn’t achieve promotion were pretty clear - injuries and a tired old squad. We’ve chopped and changed manager so often over the last decade, a period of stability wouldn’t go amiss.


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