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Opinion

Wrestling, Weddings and Rugby to blame for half the Sunderland fans missing play-off semi

5 months ago
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I have to give my thanks to Sunderland fans this weekend.

I haven’t laughed so much in ages.

Well at least not since they finished bottom of the Premier League, then walked the Championship in 24th position, before then dominating League One in 5th place.

Much was made of over 40,000 Sunderland fans wanting to go for a day out at Wembley (Checkatrade Trophy final) and complaints from many of their supporters that it was a disgrace they didn’t get even more tickets, due to their passionate fans/massive fanbase etc etc.

I saw an article on The Mag in the lead up the Mackems playing on Saturday night, Sunderland fans arguing about how rubbish the crowd was going to be.

Their biggest game of the season saw them take a narrow 1-0 first leg lead but the big story for those watching were the massive sections of empty seats.

The crowd was announced as 26,610, so when you take away the 2,000 Portsmouth fans, you are left with only 24,610, which fills just half of the Stadium of Light, which also includes corporates. So getting on for only half the 40,000+ who went to Wembley, could be bothered to turn up and support the team for the biggest game of the season.

I went and had a look at what reasons were being given by Sunderland fans for not turning up, some absolute classic excuses…

Sunderland fans comment via their Ready To Go (to the match unless it is on a Saturday night..) message board:

Wedding season:

”The fact it’s a first leg on a Saturday night in Wedding season will have hampered it.’

A rugby match is on in Newcastle:

‘The Heineken Cup is on in Newcastle and the prices of trains and flights are through the roof.’

Have to buy a ticket from ticket office;

‘It is downright stupid not to have cash turnstiles.’

Wrestling:

‘The wrestling is also on in Newcastle at the same time. Considering we only found out last Saturday we are planning at home to Pompey today, people wouldn’t have time to book transport or hotels. People forget a lot of us have to travel from outside the NE for games.’

Should have been free to get in:

‘I am not going, although I thought I was and have set up my day appropriately..

Cos, I was silly enough to think my season ticket covered this game.’

Saving up for Wembley:

‘The simple economics argument….(keeping money for) a potential visit to Wembley.’

Saturday night is ‘unorthodox’, Sunday crowd would have have been much bigger:

‘I reckon around 5,000 more tickets would have been sold if it was on the Sunday. 7:30 on a Saturday is unorthodox time to play.’

7.30pm is too late for kids AND better to drink cans in front of TV:

‘One of the worst excuses I’ve seen so far is “it’s too late to take the kids out”. Which to me translates as ” if I go to the match with the bairns I can’t get pi..ed, so will buy loads of cans and sit in front of the telly”.’

‘That maybe true for older kids but unfair on parents who have younger ones that usually go to bed around 8pm.’

The pubs are open:

‘There will be a canny chunk of people who won’t put anything before a couple of drinks. They probably won’t admit it, but the match will be getting in the way of drinking time.’

Ant and Dec:

‘Not going as would prefer to watch Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.’

Tickets too expensive:

‘Think ticket prices are way over the top (Tickets were £20 adults and £7.50 kids).’

Jack Ross:

‘Crowd will be directly affected as a result of the garbage of performances procured by Jack Ross. It’s not rocket science.’

Live on TV:

‘The relatively ‘low’ crowd for this game is because it is being televised live.’

The team are rubbish:

The club are lucky to get anywhere near 25k given how terrible they have been this season. Checkatrade finals don’t cut it. 5th in league one is a disgrace.

Playing on a Saturday night:

‘Playing a game at 19.30 on a Saturday night is a load of nonsense regardless of the fact its a play off.’

Didn’t think Sunderland would win:

‘We dont deserve to go up and in my opinion wont go up, a lot of people are obviously thinking like me hence the poor ticket sales.’

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