Roger Mason: Tyne-Wear derby evokes memories of Brian Clough and George Herd starring for Sunderland

Newcastle United host Sunderland on Sunday lunchtime
Newcastle United host Sunderland on Sunday lunchtime
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Sunderland fans have been sharing their memories of Tyne-Wear derbies past ahead of Sunday's crunch Newcastle v Sunderland clash.

Roger Mason, who lives in Chelmsford, Essex, has been an avid Sunderland fan since 1953 and he contacted us to share his memories of his first Tyne-Wear derby from the 1961-62 campaign.

Mr Mason said: "Saturday, December 2, 1961, St.James's Park saw the first ever "Tyne-Wear" League derby match outside the top flight.

"I was a student in Leeds at the time and hitch-hiked up for the game.

"Later I wrote of "an intensely exciting match......Sunderland deserve credit for getting a point after twice being behind."

"White and McGuigan scored for the Mags; Brian Clough scored twice for SAFC.

"53,991 of us were there, the highest League attendance anywhere in England that day - at a time when all four Divisions played on a Saturday afternoon.

"I still have my copy of the match programme. It cost 3d, less than 2p in today's money!

"In the return fixture (21.04.62) we won 3-0. George Herd tormented their defence and scored two goals.

"Willie McPheat notched the other in a resounding 3-0 win in which our right-winger Harry Hooper also stood out.

"57,666 of us witnessed that match at Roker Park and it poured with rain throughout the first half.

"As both Fulwell and Roker ends were uncovered in those days, we Sunderland fans were soaked to the skin but very happy with the scoreline.

"PS: Inflation must have been rampant on Wearside as the matchday programme cost 4d!"

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