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Sunderland v Wycombe Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Play-Off Final

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Fan Letters: “Arby was definitely worth persisting with - I’m sad to see him leave”

Player contracts, fan media ideas, and a poignant request regarding the pre-match music are covered today! Got something to say? Email us:

Photo by Federico Maranesi/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I’m glad that we have offered Lynden Gooch a new contract, but I’m a little upset for Arby Xhemajli. I still think that after investing so much time rehabbing him, we could have given him another year.

I think we might live to regret letting him go.

Tom in Sherburn Village

Ed’s Note [Phil]: Thanks for your letter, Tom.

I agree with you on Lynden Gooch, but I always felt that Arby was a curious one.

He was something of a left-field signing when he first arrived, and although he looked good pre-injury, he’s obviously still on the comeback trail, and clearly a parting of the ways has been settled on.

He’s definitely got something to offer, however, and where he goes next will be interesting!

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

Dear Roker Report,

Why hasn’t Billy the Beard p*ssed off yet?

I’m sick of seeing this bloke everywhere, including in Trafalgar Square, where he was stood all night begging for attention. Such an odious turd.

Kev Charlton

Ed’s Note [Phil]: Hi, Kev.

I agree that the ongoing presence of William Storey is a major irritation.

Whether he’s simply doing it for further publicity, or because he genuinely believes he has a chance of investing in the club is still unknown, but seeing him popping up everywhere is something we could do without, frankly.

I don’t believe he has any affinity for the club, and once the ownership situation is resolved, hopefully that’ll be the last we see of him!

F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Me and my brother have just bought season cards for the first time in years, after falling back in love with Sunderland down in the capital last weekend.

All we’ve been going on about since then is the genius of the ‘Lee Howey’ chant, and how we’ve never noticed its simple brilliance before. We have been singing it constantly and pointing it out whenever we hear it.

We want to start a blog of short, concise reviews of every Championship matchday, specifically regarding the chant’s prominence throughout the day, rating each matchday out of ten.

We would also measure the amount of times we heard it, the engagement of other fans, the decibel levels, the enthusiasm and other ‘key Howey’-related factors.

The title we were thinking of would be ‘How Are The Howeys’

All I really want to ask is whether this a terrible idea, or an absolute stroke of genius? To me, it could be either- a bunch of useless waffle or an absolute crease.

To Lee or not to Lee? Could you get behind How Are the Howeys?

Thanks for reading through this drivel, would love to hear what you think.

Dom Knight.

Ed’s Note [Phil]: Hi, Dom, and thanks for getting in touch!

It certainly sounds like a quirky, offbeat kind of fan media outlet, and I suspect that there will be plenty of these ideas being floated, now that we are back in the Championship and interest in the club will be greater.

As always with ideas such as this, it all depends on whether it strikes a chord with people, and whether people get the humour of it.

Why not go for it, and see what people think of it in the early stages? Nothing ventured, nothing gained, after all!

Sunderland v Stoke city, Soccer Photo by Aubrey Washington/EMPICS via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I was just wondering if anyone at the Roker Report knew where I could find the pre-match walkout music that was most recently used for the playoff semi-final first leg?

If not, would you be able to point me in the direction of someone at the club who I could email to make this request?

The reason behind this strange request is that I lost my dad last week, and as part of the funeral, we’d like him to enter to the music the lads walk out to.

He was a lifelong fan of Sunderland AFC, and his last memories of the club was seeing them getting promoted, which is a memory I’ll hold with me for life. There is nothing we enjoyed more than watching the lads when we could get up to the Stadium of Light!

Many thanks in advance,

Dan S

Ed’s Note [Rich]: Hi Dan. I’m really sorry to hear of your loss and the whole Roker Report team send their condolences to you and your family at what must be a really difficult moment.

The full list of the tracks played at the Stadium of Light against Sheffield Wednesday are listed in the image below, but we walked out to ‘Ready to Go’ by Republica, which followed ‘Dance of the Nights’ from Romeo and Juliet by Prokofiev, with Elvis Presley’s ‘Can’t Help Falling In Love’, played just before kick-off and I’ve embedded the tracks below too.

The playlist for the Playoff Semi Final First Leg as published on Frankie Francis’ twitter


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