Ex-Sunderland striker talks 'emotion' and 'pride' after sitting with 50k fans at Wembley

Kevin Kyle has revealed his emotions during Sunderland’s League One play-off final win against Wycombe Wanderers at Wembley.

Saturday, 4th June 2022, 2:00 pm

The Scot broke into the Sunderland first team in the 2003–04 campaign and ended the season as the club’s joint-top goalscorer with 16 goals to help them to the play-offs.

The following season, Kyle suffered a hip injury which hampered his time on Wearside before joining Coventry City. Stints at Kilmarnock, Rangers Hearts and Ayr United followed.

But Kyle was back in England to watch his former club compete in the League One play-off final.

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 25: Kevin Kyle of Sunderland makes his feelings known to referee Mike Dean during the FA Cup Fifth Round Replay match between Birmingham City and Sunderland at St. Andrew's on February 25, 2004 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“I went down to Wembley to watch it. I went with my two eldest boys,” Kyle told The Echo. “My oldest is a season ticket holder so I met him down in London and met my other boy Harry.

"And that was up there with probably one of the best experiences in my Sunderland time. Playing for those fans was amazing. I took my fair share of flak off them and I took my fair share of praise off them over the years!

“But to actually sit in with 48,000/50,000 Sunderland fans was amazing. It is something I will never forget. It was quite emotional really. I was proud that somehow I managed to play for this club at one point.

“It was really amazing. I’m glad they’ve got rid of the hoodoo in League One and that they’re now in the Championship.

“What the plans will now be? I don’t know. Let’s not get too carried away. The Championship is tough. They have to get consolidated and get some new owners in!”