Sunderland fans defend use of York train station in new away kit launch pictures

Brendan O'Donnell. the great great grandson of Sunderland AFC founder of James Allan, modelling the club's new away shirt.
Brendan O'Donnell. the great great grandson of Sunderland AFC founder of James Allan, modelling the club's new away shirt.
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Sunderland AFC fans have defended the club after it used York train station as a backdrop to help launch the club’s new away strip.

Black Cats supporter Brendan O’Donnell, who is the great great grandson of club founder James Allan, was seen in the crowd at Friday’s match against Derby County wearing the sky blue shirt.

Brendan was inundated with questions from other supporters asking where he got the shirt from and if it had been released.

Some fans had criticised the use of York station in promotional pictures for the kit launch.

But Paul Dobson, joint editor of fanzine A Love Supreme, said he did not see the use of the location as a huge problem.

“It would have maybe been nice if the club had said at the time that pictures were being taken in York because that’s where the lad is from, but that’s just one of those things.

“Sunderland station isn’t a particularly photogenic train station so it probably couldn’t have been taken there.

“But the main thing is about the fact that this lad is the great-great grandson of the club founder.

“It’s great that the club is recognising these people, because there are still plenty relatives about of those who played for Sunderland.”

Two videos of Brendan speaking about the launch were released on the club’s official Twitter feed.

In the second of the videos, taken following the game which ended in a 1-1 draw, he said: “I think the mission that the club gave me tonight before kick-off was a bit of a success.

“Basically I have been wondering around all evening wearing this, as you can see, this is our new away shirt for the 2017/2018 season.

“People have been asking me all night ‘where’s that shirt?’, ‘what’s that shirt?’, ‘where did you get that shirt from?’, ‘Is that the new away shirt?’.

“I have been saying ‘no, you will have to wait to find out’.

“My great grandad gave me this, the guy who founded Sunderland football club all those years ago.”

The new kit went on sale on Monday.