Transfer deadline. What transfer deadline? If you catch Peter Reid on TalkSport later, ask him about his playing comeback in east Durham. *Images courtesy of the WhatCulture website …
Anyone who follows Peter Reid’s activity on Twitter will know that he’s a good sport, answering fans’ questions, retweeting deserving causes and generally engaging in lively banter.
I once lobbed this one at him: “Another Sunderland @GhostofRoker @reid6peter ‘Sign Tore Andre Flo, best when ball played to his feet, but send balls to his head.’ Fair or foul, Peter?” and loved the reply: “@salutsunderland @ghostofroker 1 month with him then sacked ! You tell me.”
At the weekend, he gave a new dimensions to this willingness to rub shoulders with ordinary supporters and grass roots football by signing for the Sunday league side FC Easington.
When you’ve managed Sunderland – two promotions as champions, two seventh top finishes, don’t forget – having played with and against the best in the world, that doesn’t sound an obvious career break. So hats off to the man …
News of this momentous event reached me first from our friend and contributor Tom Lynn, who has an impeccable record of Sunderland support and formerly edited of The Wearisde Roar.
Tom wrote: “Peter Reid was at the Arsenal match and in the Horden/Peterlee area on Saturday night with friends. Allegedly a lad asked him if he’d play for an Easington Sunday morning team today, and to their amazement he turned up and also apparently signed a registration form. Tremendous craic, eh?”
Looking elsewhere, I came across the WhatCulture website and this piece by Nathan Lee, who owns up to being an “avid Man Untd fan”:
Peter Reid has agreed a deal to return to football in a playing capacity by joining Sunday league club FC Easington.
The ex-Sunderland manager and England player has signed on until the end of the season, which will see him in his first playing role since leaving Bury in 1995.
Fifty-six year old Reid, had been attending the Sunderland v Arsenal game on Saturday afternoon and after watching the team he managed for 7 years, he got talking to FC Easington player Christopher Ber at a local hotel, where Ber, 21, joked he should come and sign for the amateur team on Sunday morning.
To everyone’s surprise, Reid kept to his word and turned up the next morning to watch FC Easington play Old Shotton Royal George in the Peterlee and District Sunday League.
The FC Easington boss, Martin Dunn, told WhatCulture: “We’re absolutely delighted Peter has agreed to sign for us … It is unbelievable to have a former England player coming to the Peterlee and Sunday League. Hopefully this can really raise the profile of everyone involved.”