SUNDERLAND City Council leader Coun Paul Watson admits he was surprised by Niall Quinn’s change of role.
He said: “It’s come as a shock – we feel that Niall is the club.
“While he’s still got some connection with the club and he’s still an ambassador for the city we will support him – and the club and Ellis Short – in anyway we can.”
“We really appreciate what Niall’s done for the city. Hopefully his new role will allow him to keep his interest and love for the city.
“There were rumours he would go to Man City, but he doesn’t have the same deep connections there as he does in Sunderland.”