“Roker stars not for sale”

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IN the middle of the current spate of publicity which keeps Sunderland in the forefront of national sports news, Manager Bob Stokoe has stepped in with facts to kill stories that threaten to “rock the boat,” writes Argus.

The suggestion that Manchester United have put in a bid for Dave Watson and West Ham United for Denis Tueart have been repeated so often and with hints of authority that the general public are beginning to accept them as factual.

Mr Stokoe says: “No such offer has ever been made by Manchester United. So far as Tueart is concerned, I talked to West Ham manager, Mr Ron Greenwood about a lot of things after the Reading replay and when Tueart’s name was mentioned I told him that he was not available at any price and the matter ended there.

“It’s unfair to my players to have these sort of stories hitting at their feelings and what would our supporters think if we entertained the idea of such transfers at this stage?

“Derek Forster, Keith Coleman, John Lathan, and John Jones are available for transfer, because we think a change of club might be good for them and Brian Chambers is available arising from a tribunal decision.

But beyond that group we have no intention of parting with anyone and it does not help to have stories bandied around which have no substance in fact.”

Story taken from the Sunderland Echo on March 19 1973.