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Fan Letters: “Has Jordan Henderson not earned the right to a final payday?”

Thoughts on Henderson’s potential move to Saudi Arabia and more discussions about potential comings and goings are in the RR mailbox today! Got something to say? Email us:

Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I’m tired of seeing all these pundits and radio hosts grilling Jordan Henderson for taking the Saudi money.

Let’s be honest here: he’s been in the game for almost twenty years and I reckon that after wages, endorsements and other stuff minus taxes and spends, he’s probably sitting on £30 to £60 million, either in the bank or in assets.

It’s reported that he’s going to receive £700,000 per week and that’ll be tax free for the next three years.

That’s almost £110 million and there’s nobody, bar Lionel Messi, who would turn that down, especially at the age of thirty three and when you’ve won every trophy at club level.

All these low income fans, halfwit pundits and people from the LGBTQ communities can sit there and say he should turn it down because he wore rainbow laces once and made a few comments, but throw that offer at them and watch them change their tune and embrace the Saudis just like Newcastle fans did.

It’s an offer he simply can’t refuse and he’d be stupid if he did, so good luck to him.

Paul Robinson

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

I think the issue when it comes to Henderson potentially signing for a Saudi club is the fact that as Liverpool captain and an England international, he’s become a very high profile figure and has used that platform to advance the causes of equality and tolerance in football, qualities that the Saudi league does not and will never embody.

Seemingly sacrificing them after all the good work he’s done feels like a misstep, and for those who considered him an ally in the fight against intolerance, it might feel like a slap in the face from a player who is universally admired and respected.

Is it worth it? I don’t think it is, personally.

Crystal Palace v Liverpool - Premier League - Selhurst Park Photo by John Walton/PA Images via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

Ross Stewart obviously doesn’t want to sign his contract at the club.

This has been evident for a long time now, so why would we want someone at the club who doesn’t want to be here?

With only a year left of his current deal (I think) we should just sell him and get what we can, although he must be replaced with quality.

Kris Day

Ed’s Note [Phil]: Hi, Kris. Thanks for your letter!

Personally, I’m not entirely convinced that Stewart is somehow holding the club to ransom (perhaps a misguided view, but that’s how I see it).

He’s been a top professional ever since he arrived at Sunderland and after two serious injuries, he’s still on the comeback trail and maybe that’s a factor. If he signs a new deal, returns to the first team and breaks down, where does that leave the player and the club?

I do think a solution needs to be found as quickly as possible, though. Having the spectre of a potential contract wrangle hanging over the club as we start the new season wouldn’t be ideal for anyone.

Sunderland v Middlesbrough - Sky Bet Championship Photo by MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I feel that I must comment on the amount of ‘false news’ that’s circulating about transfers, and Sunderland’s business in particular.

Every time I view social media, it informs me about incomings and outgoings.

Read enough of these and it becomes easy to build a pattern: clubs looking for a striker are nominally interested in Ross Stewart, and when any clubs are losing a defender or winger, Dan Ballard or Jack Clarke are mentioned.

Similarly, we must’ve been linked with dozens of forwards of varying ability, nationality and levels of experience.

The success of our recruitment in the last two seasons is often down to the fact that nobody has been aware of the incoming players until very shortly before or when the deal has been done.

Yes, a new number nine would be nice, although it won’t be Anthony Martial (until maybe next season) so we need to have faith and be patient.

J. Collings

Ed’s Note [Phil]: Hi, J. Thanks for getting in touch!

It’s certainly been a classically entertaining summer on Sunderland social media.

If I had a pound for every time I’d seen the phrase ‘Sunderland should be all over this’ or ‘I’d definitely take him at Sunderland’ whenever a certain player’s name pops up, I’d be able to chip in to our transfer fund and help us buy some new players myself!

However, I think it ultimately comes down to trust in the recruitment team.

They’ve rarely led us astray or not delivered when it comes to signings (with some exceptions) and they’ve clearly got a plan to strengthen and ensure that we’re 100% ready for what’ll certainly be another challenging season. For me, that’s good enough for the here and now.

San Antonio v Sunderland Pe-Season Friendly Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Dear Roker Report,

I’d like to send a message to Kyril Louis-Dreyfus, Kristjaan Speakman and Tony Mowbray

I’ve seen the latest news about Eliezer Mayenda, which claimed that the move hasn’t been agreed because of the price being raised by his parent club, Sochaux.

I really want to see this signing happen so can you please return with a bigger bid, closer to or maybe exactly what they want in order to get him to the club?

He’s had a look around the Academy of Light, he apparently likes the facilities and he wants to join Sunderland.

Please just raise the bid and stop being tight on the budget because he’s really promising, so get him in without any delay on the bidding.

Liam Shepard

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

I think the encouraging thing about a potential deal for the young striker is that the clubs don’t seem to be too far apart in terms of negotiating, and I’d be surprised if we didn’t persist with it and try and make sure the transfer is completed.

As you say, it sounds as though he’s very eager to join Sunderland so perhaps that could be crucial when it comes to negotiating, and whether Sochaux would be willing to stand in his way if he’s adamant that he wants to leave.


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