The Future Heads of SAFC

June 19, 2019

With the takeover of the club by Mark Campbell’s consortium seemingly imminent, it is important to look at both the potential positive and negative impacts of the deal; including the implications for the future and the health of the club.

 

Firstly, the deal will lead to a significant amount of investment into the squad. This is of course beneficial with powerful strikers such as John Marquis and Freddie Ladapo targeted to bolster our attack. Surely this can only be a good thing, as last season the squad as a whole lacked the sufficient quality to attain promotion. With more investment, we should have a team that plays excellent football and doesn’t struggle to kill off teams. 

 

Additionally, the deal is likely to add more stability to the club in the long-term. Stewart Donald has been very clear in saying that he doesn’t have the financial power to fund the club; it is therefore probably better for everyone if he receives extra support sooner rather than later. With Campbell’s investment and the current board’s continuous fan engagement and transparency, they could form a formidable set up that help the club both on and off the pitch. 

 

On the other hand, it looks like Campbell's takeover may lead to Juan Sartori taking a more backseat role. This might mean that the investment we expected from Sartori isn't going to happen, or at least not for a while. Although there will be investment elsewhere, from Campbell and the consortium, they perhaps don’t have the same wealth as Juan and his family; this could cause us potential problems in the future as the American may not be able to fully back the club once he realises the sheer difficulty of the job, and how much money actually has to be put into a successful club. However, Sartori should already be clued up on the effort needed, as his family run AS Monaco. 

 

Furthermore, recent developments with the Stadium of Light seem to hint that the club could be seen as a “Cash Cow”. This is because recently the club released a video explaining the benefits of selling naming rights to companies. This has led to a small portion of fans claiming that there is a loss of sentimentality with this potential name change, many fans including myself have grown up only knowing the home of Sunderland to be the SOL, so may feel saddened by the change of the name.

 

It may be a coincidence, but it seems as if the video was released at an inappropriate time, right before the takeover is set to happen. Potentially this could be because it was a requirement of the new owners, which suggests that this exploitation of the club’s assets could become more common.

 

Ultimately, it seems that the takeover is a good thing for the club going forward; more investment leads to better football being played, which leads to the club eventually getting back to the promised land of the Premier League. Fans of course have the right to be doubtful though and until it’s all sorted some will be nervous for the future.

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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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