Credit: MattytheWhite at Wikipedia
First a club statement on Simon Grayson’s appointment as manager. Read it here or see a summary in the footnote*.
And secondly, apologies to Martin Bain, chief executive, and Simon for hacking their phone conversation. In fact, it’s so exclusive that it isn’t true. All imaginary, just a spot of fun – and a warm welcome to the new boss …
Good morning, Stephen, Martin Bain here again ….
—It’s Simon, Mr Bain
Oops. Easy mistake. But och, call me Martin. Just wondered if you still fancied a few months up in Sunderland
— Come again! A few months?
Oops, Freudian slip. We’ve been tending to get through a couple of managers a year
— Didn’t David have a longer stretch?
Ah yes, a full season but that’s unheard of in recent years, since Simon Bruce in fact
— Steve you mean?
Och aye! Anyway, we were calling Moyesie the Fingertips Man by the end
— Why fingertips?
‘Cos that’s what he was hanging on by, laddie (sorry – that’s a gag I got from another Scotsman, Charlie Wilson, who used to edit The Times)
— So about the job …
Yes. We’ll substantially increase your pay on what you’re getting from Preston
—Is there a bonus for avoiding relegation?
Not this season, or at least not unless we have to fire you at Christmas and get Big Sam or someone in. But come on, are you up for it?
— Well I’m certainly flattered to be your choice
Em, strictly speaking, you aren’t. The heart said go for Conte, Mourinho, Pochettino, Wenger even
— And what happened with them?
Well, there were obstacles, complications. But Derek McInnes nearly came
Derek who? Anyway, what about money for team building?
Well, we have a great squad of promising young players and some decent experience
Yes, of course, there’s Jermain. He’ll get a hatful of goals in the Championship
Ah. He’s gone
—Well, there’s still Borini
Going, and Anichebe’s off to China
—So no strikers. But well, we’ll be OK with Seb in midfield. A great, seasoned old pro
Er, he’s not on the retained list
—Lamine at the heart of defence, though!
Mmm, we’re hoping to sell him for quite a big fee
So what with all the money from Jermain …
He went on that free we’d agreed …
—Blimey! Are you serious? But Jordan, Borini, Kone if he goes …
That could be tricky. Club’s £110m in debt
But the transfer fees, the parachute payment, the huge gates?
Well we have to pay out big time on the bodged Alvarez contract. And Margaret Byrne cost a packet to get rid of
—Surely I’ll get some of the transfer money
Och aye, but let’s not worry about such detail. All will come right in the rain
— Ah yes, the weather. Preston might be a bit of a dump but I heard it’s wet and windy up in Sunderland
Nonsense. Ask anyone – it’s the Roker Riviera! And you’ll just love the Bridges Centre. Anyway, you’re from Ripon for heaven’s sake
— Yeah but that’s posh Yorkshire, Mmm. All in all, a bit of a challenge?
Absolutely. That’s why we came to you, Stephen. Let’s consider it a done deal
* We’ve had our fun.Now it’s time to get hehind Simon and the Lads.
Here are extracts from the safc.com announcement:
Simon Grayson has been appointed as Sunderland’s new manager after putting pen to paper on a three-year deal.
A seasoned manager who has taken charge of over 600 games, Grayson has vast experience of building and improving teams and he arrives on Wearside following a four-year spell at Preston North End where he led the Lilywhites from the lower reaches of League One to Championship play-off contenders.
The new Sunderland boss will meet up with his squad tomorrow before flying to Austria to oversee a five-day training camp alongside his assistant Glynn Snodin, as Robbie Stockdale and Adrian Tucker continue in their respective roles.
And speaking to safc.com, Grayson said: “I am delighted to come to Sunderland, a club with such wonderful history and tradition, and I’m excited by the opportunity to manage this club and I want to bring the good times back.
“Sunderland are so fortunate to have such tremendous support and I want to give these fans a team they can be proud of.
“I want a group of players full of desire, team spirt and a never-say-die attitude – that’s the very least that we should expect from a Sunderland player.
“The Championship is a demanding league, but with all the attributes I have highlighted then our aim has to be to get the club back to where it belongs as quickly as possible and I can’t wait to get started.”