Sunderland AFC fans welcome director Juan Sartori’s decision to put political hopes on hold to cheer on the Lads in Checkatrade Trophy Final at Wembley

Sunderland AFC fans are over the moon with news that club director Juan Sartori is putting his political aspirations on hold to cheer on the Black Cats at Wembley this weekend.

Tuesday, 26th March 2019, 5:00 am
Executive director Juan Sartori.

The co-owner was a regular at the Stadium of Light in the early weeks of the season, but has recently been campaigning to become the National Party’s presidential candidate ahead of the general election for the presidency in his native Uruguay.

And while his campaigning has stepped up a notch in recent weeks - with primary elections set to take place on June 30 - Sartori is set to back Sunderland when they face Portsmouth this weekend.

Micky Horswill

A Love Supreme fanzine writer Paul Dobson is delighted to see the executive director demonstrating his dedication to the club.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

“I know he has been a bit in the background recently, but you would expect him to be concentrating on his political career, said ‘Sobs.’

“It is good to see he is prepared to show his commitment to the club by coming across to the UK for a cup final.

“A normal home game takes him two or three days travelling, so it is nice he has made the decision to come over.”

Sunderland fans celebrate the teams Checkatrade Trophy semi final win in Quinn's Bar at the Stadium of Light

It was a long time since the club’s owners had made the effort to show support, said Paul: “I did see Ellis Short on the Tube after Sam Allardyce’s first game,” he said.

“He seemed to be around then but when it started to go wrong, he disappeared, which was probably a good thing at the time.”

Micky Horswill was part of the last Sunderland side to be victorious at Wembley, the 1973 FA Cup-winning team.

“I love to see a bit of passion,” he said.

Sunderland take on Portsmouth at Wembley on Sunday

“I think it is really important and he is just doing the right thing. He knows where his priorities lie - we’re much more important than Uruguay.

“Seriously, it is lovely to see a bit of passion from people who care about the club.

“You would not have seen Ellis Short doing something like that - if he was running for president of a country, he would not have put that on hold to come to a cup match.

“I am really chuffed.”

Michael Ganley

Fans’ Museum founder Michael Ganley said: “The man is barmy.

“It just shows the commitment he has and how Sunderland and the fans have got under his skin.

“He committed by buying shares in the club and he is going to experience something unique just nine months later.

“It just shows you how big the club is around the world.”