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Opinion

Time for a ‘Gloaters’ reunion?

2 months ago
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I was recently talking to some of the Fairs Cup lads, who have their regular shindigs.

Afterwards, I was asked by a few of my old mates, if I could use an article to gather some support for a reunion from an event that is fondly etched into their memories and mine.

It’s back to May 1987 and Starship were Number 1 in the pop charts with “Nothing’s going to stop us.”

Nothing was going to stop us either, as hundreds of Geordies made the trip to Roker Park on 17th of May, for the second leg of the play-off semi-final, Sunderland v Gillingham.

On arrival at the ground, me and my mates were approached by a policeman who looked about seven foot tall.

I’ll never forgot what he said…

“Right lads no bullsh.t, are you Sunderland, Gillingham….or are you gloaters?”

We were quite taken aback but the late Simon Jones replied back: “Actually officer, we are gloaters.”

Can you imagine to our surprise, the big cop then came back with: “Cheers lads, follow me, the gloaters are over here,” and then escorted us to our own exclusive turnstile.

Well to cut a long story short, the Black Cats ran out of luck…and Tony Cascarino sank the final nail into their third Division coffin in the final minute of extra-time.

Cue wild celebrations on the terraces from the “Gloaters”…the memories of which still obviously bring such a warm glow to many.

Now over thirty years down the line and the mackems are once again enjoying the pleasures of the third tier of English football, for the fourth season running.

They have had plenty of fun during the disastrous Ashley years, even though their team were continual relegation fodder, even flew aeroplanes over St James Park to mock us.

So hopefully with the permission of the editor (who I know won’t mind me recalling that he was also a fellow gloater), I wonder if any of the boys of ’87 fancy a get together, maybe even fancy starting a new club, like our older Fairs Cup fans.

If nothing else, it would be a bit of a laugh, though probably still not as hilariously funny as it was back in the day.

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