Comment was offensive

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I am writing with reference to comments made by Jermain Jenas on the match of the day Facebook account.

I am a 52-year-old Sunderland supporter who lives in St Albans, Hertfordshire, and have followed my team home and away for nearly 40 years – as a result I have had to endure lots of disappointment and had to deal with many offensive comments over the years but I would have to say I can’t remember ever being as angry as I was after hearing Jermain Jenas saying that Sunderland fans should be ashamed of themselves.

I am outraged at this comment and just can’t let this rest.

I grew up with Match Of The Day and have been a viewer for many years – I can’t believe that producers of the programme think it is OK for average ex-players to voice opinions that are deeply offensive. Why is it OK to offend the very people you want to watch the programme?

John Motson would never have offended a viewer in this way.

I was one of the fans at the Stadium of Light that got out of my seat on 80 minutes – I walked round the stadium to be nearer an exit to get to the train station as I had a train back to London to catch. I got home that day at 12.45am after watching my team lose again, only to be told that I should be ashamed of myself for doing so. How dare anyone think that that is OK to do. To my knowledge no Sunderland fan has been asked why they left the ground.

I am sure you all think, surely, Sunderland fans did not expect to beat Man City so they could not have left because they were losing. Maybe if you think like that you should focus your attention on why there were so many fans in the stadium in the first place.

The attendances at the Stadium of Light (taking into consideration the rubbish we have been watching for years) are amazing, figures that most football clubs can only dream of and it is this that should be talked about. But, no, everyone always has to focus on the negatives. Just remember that lots of football grounds are filled with people who do not really have the money to be there but they are and without real fans like these that fill the stadiums, provide the atmosphere and give the passion, football would not be sold round the world like it is, providing many jobs for offensive ex-footballers.

I have spent thousands and thousands of pounds travelling round the country following my team and I really find it hard to stomach that I should be told that I should be ashamed of myself for leaving the ground early.

I have found it really hard to write this without being offensive myself as I am still that angry. I think it only fair that Sunderland fans have the opportunity to have their say after such a scathing comment. I would also like to know what is going to be done about the fact that in the name of Match Of The Day thousands of people have been offended (a whole city, in fact).

To my knowledge a football pundits job is to talk about the game and the players – it is not their job to insult and deeply offend the fans. I am therefore copying in various people in the hope that it will be seen by someone who has a voice and can speak for us and maybe get something done to stop this outrageous behaviour. At the very least to stop Jermaine Jenas and Phil Neville from ever entering the Stadium of Light again.

Lastly there has never been a day or will there ever be a day when Sunderland fans should feel ashamed of themselves. We have gone above and beyond supporting our club and we always will.

Lesley Tinker