I’ve seen Man United fall, now I’m off to Montreal, Martin Bates, Martin Bates

Excuse the coat. It was freezing
Excuse the coat. It was freezing

John McCormick writes: I’m not sure if the title line will make sense to you but when I was putting it up a song was going through my head and I thought…

“…why not, Martin Bates deserves a bit of appreciation”.

The only problem is I couldn’t fit Toronto in, so he’ll have to make do with Montreal.

Here’s the final part of Martin’s trilogy. By now he should have have winged his way back across the Atlantic but, after this game, he probably didn’t need a plane. What a send off.

Hope you enjoyed the trip, Martin, and thanks for the reports.

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A Canadian Mackem’s diary: Kop that for a comeback at Liverpool

Martin raises the North America Sunderland Supporters’ Association banner aloft at Anfield

The football part of Martin Bates‘s grand pilgrimage to Sunderland, where his parents were born and raised before heading west to Canada, began with a stirring but losing performance at home to Manchester City. Since he was fearing the worst at Anfield on Saturday when two home goals went in, you can imagine Martin’s joy at witnessing a gutsy late revival. Here is part two of a Canadian Mackem’s trip-home diary …

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The Canadian Mackem: a Sunderland diary starts with ‘timewasting’ Manchester City

Martin, back in his spiritual home

Many readers will recall Martin Bates‘s welcome contributions in words and pictures from Toronto when the pre-season tour reached Canada. From pure Wearside stock, Martin is Sunderland daft and anyone befriending him on Facebook will have sensed his great excitement at starting a trip back home, picking up tickets for the Man City, Liverpool and Man Utd games and soaking up the atmosphere and beer of the city where his roots are found. This, we hope, is the first of at least two slices of his back-to-Sunderland diary …

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Unanswered questions about Advocaat’s future squad as Sunderland face Aston Villa

For no really good reason
, except that it’s Friday and no one ever seems to write for these pages on Fridays, let’s give another well-deserved boost to the excellent lads and lasses of the SAFC Supporters’ Association branch in North America – SAFC NASA for short.

Just before we get onto transfer talk, the photo gallery is from Martin Bates, one of the Out West supporters who kept Salut! Sunderland in the loop during the pre-season tour.

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Sunderland Out West: Jermain vs Jozy. The battle in Toronto looms

Martin Bates
Martin Bates

Martin Bates is our latest Out West reporter to keep an eye on all things Sunderland in North America. Martin, a Canadian with Sunderland family origins, has the advantage of following our next opponents, Toronto, in all games in which they are not playing us, if that makes sense. So he knows all about both clubs and all about the possible battle royal between ex-Toronto man Jermain Defoe and ex-Sunderland man Jozy Altidore. Let Martin set the scene …

See all artiicles in the Sunderland Out West series at https://safc.blog/category/sunderland-out-west-2015/

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