Sunderland shoppers have their say on Adam Johnson

Peter Keelty
Peter Keelty
0
Have your say

Sunderland shoppers had plenty to say on how club bosses handled the charges against Adam Johnson and the behaviour of the player himself.

Stadium of Light season ticket holder Peter Keelty said the England winger had betrayed the fans who idolised him.

Paul Amundsen

Paul Amundsen

"We used to cheer him on," said 64-year-old Peter, from Sunderland.

"I am very disappointed that he has deceived us. He has deceived everybody. He deserves what he gets - he has been proved guilty and sacked because of it."

The club’s board had been in a difficult position in light of the possible legal consequences of sacking Johnson when the allegations first surfaced, however: "We heard an independent barrister on the radio, saying that they would have had to play him because otherwise it would prejudice the case,” said Peter.

Paul Amundsen, 61, from Thornhill, said the decision to play Johnson had been a reflection of the financial reality of football.

Andy Ramshaw

Andy Ramshaw

"I think it just comes down to the club being in a position where they had to win," he said.

"They had an asset worth £10million and as far as they were concerned he had stated his innocence.

"I think he probably should have been suspended. But I can appreciate the fact the club was under pressure from the playing staff, the manager at the time and the PFA to play him.

"Hindsight is a wonderful thing.”

Wayne Lowdon

Wayne Lowdon

Newcastle fans Andy Ramshaw and Wayne Lowdon, from Jarrow, said club rivalry was not a factor in their belief the club should have shown Johnson the door as soon as the allegations were made.

"It is not a club issue - he should have been sacked from the start, as soon as all the allegations come out," said 38-year-old Wayne.

And Andy, 30, said he would have wanted the Magpies board to sack any player in a similar situation.

"If it had been one of our lads, the situation would have been exactly the same," he said.

Lewis Wild

Lewis Wild

"They should not have let him play and be paid all that money."

Journalism student Lewis Wild said the club management should put their hands up if they had been aware of Johnson’s admissions to police about his relationship with the girl.

"They should probably issue an apology for what they have done. They should just come out and say ‘we were wrong about this’," he said.

"They should just have terminated his contract straightaway. I don’t really see why they kept him."

Young mums Merryn Thomas and Chloe Dawson agreed the club should have acted sooner, but said the matter was over and done with now.

"They should have sacked him straightaway," said Merryn.

Merryn Thomas

Merryn Thomas

"They should not have waited until it all came out – as soon as they knew, they should have done it.

"But it is done with now."

Chloe, from Ford Estate, agreed: "They have done the right thing, but as soon as they knew , they should have just done it then.

"It gives Sunderland a bad name, but I think it is finished now."

Friends Lynn Burnicle, Patricia Hubbard and Barbara Stubbings said Johnson had to bear responsibility for what had happened.

"He has probably said he did not now how old she was at first," said Lynn, 42, while Patricia, 65, described the midfielder’s actions as ‘shameful.’

"He should have been sacked from the start," she said.

And Barbara was in no doubt about Johnson’s role in the scandal: "He absolutely knew what he was doing and thought he could get away with it," she said.

Chloe Dawson

Chloe Dawson

Patricia Hubbard

Patricia Hubbard

Lynn Burnicle

Lynn Burnicle

Barbara Stubbins

Barbara Stubbins