January Sales

It seems that Jack Ross is a little more confident that he will be financially supported in the January window, especially now that Didier Ndong's off the books. “For the business model of the club, it helps,” Ross said. “Selfishly, for me, it might help a little bit when January comes around. It’s nice to have it resolved. I don’t have an opinion because I never met him. So, it’s genuinely very difficult for me to say what I thought of him because I never came across him. Don’t get me wrong, there were a lot of things that weren’t right. But he’s still a human being. he’s a footballer and when you get to the end of your career you don’t want to have any regrets. So, I’m glad that it’s been resolved, and I’m pleased for the people at the club who have had to deal with it, because that’s been a lot of work. I’m pleased for them that it has been put to bed. Not just with Didier, with several other things, if you speak to Tony Coton, a lot of his and Richard Hill’s time and energy was spent on us moving on players who needed to move on. That was to the disadvantage of actually making sure we were always one step ahead in terms of what we could bring in. It allows us to be more focused in that way as well.”

 

He added: "The way that Stewart has always operated with me, and I said in my very first press conference that I'd never asked about budgets," Ross said. "There were good reasons for doing that with all the things that were going on and the position the club found itself in. It's obvious that with Didier leaving, it's beneficial for us, it just helps with the overall business model. Regardless of that, I think Stewart would have been supportive of anything I'd have asked for in January. He knows I've always been balanced in what I've requested as well. I know that if we want to strengthen we'll be able to do so, within reason obviously. I don't see us being hamstrung. We need to make sure we don't become too heavy in [terms of] numbers but so far, I think we've done that OK. If you look at our squad, it's probably just about right in terms of numbers. One or two might be helpful. That's again, you can't predict what will happen between now and January. But to counter that, Charlie Wyke will be coming back around that time, and Duncan Watmore will be available before then. It will be dependent on what happens between now and then."

 

Lynden Gooch will return to the squad for trip to Shrewsbury and Duncan Watmore is getting ever closer to a return, but Jack Ross is not putting a date on it just yet. “The only one who is back available who wasn't is Lynden, Glenn Loovens will train again next week. Charlie Wyke and Denver still have a bit to go, Donald Love is getting closer."

 

"Watmore has had a week of training, he has done everything, but it is too soon for him at the moment. He is getting ever closer. One thing when I first came in here, he was one of the first players I met in the summer, I get on well with him we had good chats and we continue to do that. I stressed there is a duty of care from me and the club, he has had two injuries. We were never putting a time frame on it and that has helped him, I think. He is so positive in terms of where he is at the moment. He is a very positive individual anyway. He has progressed really well and his knee is in a good place. I have never put time frames on it but it will be soon. Once he gets past that milestone he will be ever closer to being involved with us. It will be very much sooner rather than later, from what I have seen from him this week he will be in a good place. He has trained really well and feels good. This has been another week to tick off when that game comes around then it will be another thing to tick off on his way to a full recovery.”

 

However, Ethan Robson is still unavailable. Ross added: “Ethan’s injury is a little bit worse than we thought. At the time we didn’t think it was too bad, but further examination has not been great. He hasn’t trained at all yet, we’ll keep assessing it. There’s no timeframe at the moment but he certainly won’t be available for Saturday, which is a blow because it lightens us in that area of the pitch again. I feel for him. For me it’s part of the job as manager to deal with whatever challenges come my way, I never complain about having players unavailable. For him it’s frustrating because we’ve spoken about him before, having a good pre-season then suffering an injury and slipping down the pecking order a little bit. Against Carlisle it looked like he was taking that opportunity so to be injured again is disappointing. It’s my job to ensure he remains upbeat and positive during this period, so that hopefully when he comes back fit he can be back at that level we saw.”

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At the back end of the 1980s, football fanzines began to sweep the country and in 1989 we were presented with a new vehicle on which to enjoy some of this ride – A Love Supreme. ALS was a place we could all go to celebrate and commiserate being a Sunderland fan. Win, lose or draw, the pages of the fanzine became solace for many of us as we stumbled our way through our day to day lives, punctuated by the ups and downs of more match days than any of us care to remember.

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November 13, 2019

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