LiveSunderland AFC transfer news RECAP: Lee Johnson makes coaching addition as League One rivals appoint new manager
Sunderland are preparing for the two legs of their League One play-off meeting with Lincoln this week – with a spot at Wembley up for grabs for the winner.
Lee Johnson’s side face The Imps in Wednesday’s first leg away from home at the LNER Stadium.
The ground holds happy memories for the Black Cats this season, having won 4-0 there earlier in the campaign.
And fans are finally set to return to the Stadium of Light with 10,000 supporters permitted to attend Saturday’s second leg clash.
A win over the two games would secure the Wearsiders second Wembley final of the season on May 29.
Sunderland will also have to make several contract decisions over the next few weeks, with the majority of their squad set to become free agents.
With the summer transfer window set to reopen next month, talk of possible in and outgoings is starting to increase.
Here’s the latest SAFC news, analysis, rumours and more:
A message from the Football Clubs Editor
Our aim is to provide you with the best, most up-to-date and most informative Sunderland AFC coverage 365 days a year.
This depth of coverage costs, so to help us maintain the high-quality reporting that you are used to, please consider taking out a subscription to our new sports-only package here.
Your support is much appreciated. Richard Mennear, Football Clubs Editor
Sunderland AFC transfer news RECAP (May 18)
Last updated: Tuesday, 18 May, 2021, 15:31
- Sunderland are preparing for the two legs of their play-off semi-final against Lincoln this week.
- The first leg will take place at the LNER Stadium on Wednesday (6pm kick-off).
- The second leg will take place at the Stadium of Light on Saturday (3:30pm kick-off)
- Lee Johnson held his pre-match press conference earlier yesterday
Thanks for jpining us today
We’re signing off for today but will be back bright and early tomorrow with more build-up ahead of Sunderland’s League One play-off first leg against Lincoln.
You can find more Black Cats content on the SAFC section of the Echo website.
See you soon.
Lee Johnson has hinted that Tom Flanagan and Ross Stewart could both be in his matchday squad for the play-off semi final first leg against Lincoln tomorrow.
Stewart has been sidelined with a hamstring issue, while Flanagan hasn’t played since the Papa John’s Trophy final but recently returned for the under-23 side.
“We played against our U23s and Ross Stewart wasn’t involved in that but we are going to have a look at him over the next couple of days,” said Johnson.
“We think he’s OK, and certainly if he gets through the final test he would be ready to start, if we needed to.
“Tom has trained and it’s obviously something we’ve got to consider.
“He’s a top character, a top lad and he seems like he’s in good nick.”
Tributes paid to John Featherstone.
Tributes have been paid to former Sunderland AFC chairman John Featherstone.
Mr Featherstone – a chartered accountant and recruitment specialist – was a lifelong Sunderland supporter and chairman when Sunderland won the Championship in 1995-96, he was also a board member for several years.
Foundation of Light chairman and former SAFC chairman Sir Bob Murray CBE has led the tributes and described Featherstone as ‘Sunderland through and through’ – the pair worked closely together around the time Sunderland were moving from Roker Park to the Stadium of Light.
Club historian Rob Mason posted this tribute on the club’s website: “We are saddened to learn of the death of former Sunderland AFC Chairman John Featherstone.
The U23s are through to the final!
Kevin Phillips has this message for Sunderland sporting director Kristjaan Speakman
Kevin Phillips has delivered his verdict on Kristjaan Speakman’s recent SAFC Unfiltered appearance.
During the podcast, Sunderland’s sporting director explained that ‘players who want to play in the Championship are going to require more money’ but insisted it wouldn’t be an ‘issue’ going forward.
Speaking to Football Insider, Phillips responded to the remarks: “It is great to hear Speakman say that. It is encouraging.
“Sunderland need to be careful with handing out new contracts this summer because they have had their fingers burnt before. They have splashed out too much on giving big players big wages.
“The obvious one that springs to mind is Rodwell. It really stung them in the backside so I hope they get the balance right with the next round of contracts.
“Kyril Louis-Dreyfus is only young but I am sure he has people in his ear giving him sound advice. I don’t think they will be held to ransom.
“Yes, you need to pay players well if you want to have the best but I just hope they don’t get it wrong this time.”
Sunderland’s League One rivals appoint new manager
Doncaster Rovers have appointed Richie Wellens as their new first-team manager.
That the 41-year-old has completed his return to the Keepmoat where he spent two spells as a player.
The League One club saw previous boss Darren Moore depart in March to take charge of crisis-hit neighbours Sheffield Wednesday.
That left Andy Butler to take the reins at the Keepmoat until the end of the season.
But Rovers have now turned to Wellens, who will reportedly be assisted by former Republic of Ireland international striker Noel Hunt, his assistant in his previous job at Salford City.
Lee Johnson has made a short-term appointment to his coaching staff for Sunderland’s play-off campaign.
ohnson’s assistant head coach Jamie McAllister has been served with a stadium ban for the next two fixtures as a result of the controversial off-field incidents in Sunderland’s 3-1 win over Oxford United on Good Friday.
He then has a touchline ban for a further three games beyond that.
Johnson has as a result turned to former Bristol City team-mate Jamie McCombe.
Read more HERE