Postcard from Portugal: shaking and stirred as we draw the final game

'Let’s pretend we scored a goal': a chant reported by the Sunderland Echo's Chris Young
‘Let’s pretend we scored a goal’: a chant reported by the Sunderland Echo’s Chris Young

John McCormick writes: Don’t you wish you’d been there? Not for the goals but for the atmosphere? Our away fans really are the best, and here’s one of them, Richy Duggan, with his last post of the Albufeira trip.


Last post from Albufeira

Sunderland started with a mix of lads out tonight. A late team change, Vito Mannone who had a stomach illness sat out the game. Billy Jones, Lee Cattermole and Wes Brown sat out too. We looked well short at full back with Mavrias playing right back and Roberge playing centre back and Bridcutt coming in for Catts. Sunderland had one or two chances and kept the ball well but they did not do enough to transfer all the possession into an end product despite the fans singing we only want one goal. Sunderland did everything well, except score.

The highlight of the night was not the football but the fans. I am not joking either. A fan called Harry, whom we need to find now and elect as our national singer, started the full stand on a 15 minute version of the Beatles classic TWIST AND SHOUT!!! This without doubt caught on. It was the best atmosphere I have seen at a Sunderland game for many years. Was it the Super Bock or was it Sunderland? That’s the enigma – what is it makes a fan a wild breed unlike any other, one who will out sing any others and follow the lads anywhere in the world?….. Surely it has to be both!!!

As the sun went down over Albufeira so did the lights, prompting “We’ll sing in the dark, we are Sunderland, we’re not going home.” Absolutely fantastic, lads and lasses, every one of you deserved at least one goal tonight. It didn’t happen but at least we sang, pretending we had scored, with the full stand bouncing about and ending with “We always win 3 nil!!”

Save up for next year, SAFC fans. Make the trip if you are reading this! Win, lose or draw you will not be disappointed.

Or 'if anyone scores, we're on the pitch'
Or ‘if anyone scores, we’re on the pitch’

We ended up in town and there were Sunderland fans all ower! Me and Tommo got the karaoke on the go, and we could only sing one song after tonight…..TWIST AND SHOUT!!!! About twenty French and Dutch lads joined in also. I’ve actually lost my voice, so it’s just as well I can type on here!

From Albufeira’s Soccer HQ, Salut Sunderland, Safe trip home Safc fans. Remember to Shake it up Baaaabbbbyyyyyy!



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