BLACK Cats chairman Ellis Short celebrated in the Stadium of Light stands as Sunderland beat Everton – then painted the town red with ecstatic fans.
The Texan billionaire, 52, was seen drinking with supporters in Green Terrace’s Life of Riley bar hours after the win.
According to diners, before venturing into the city centre Mr Short enjoyed a curry at Pritiraj, in Queen’s Parade, Seaburn, where he is said to have left a £1,800 tip for staff.
Manager of Life of Riley, Chris Joyce, said: “I think it took people a while to realise that it was him at first, they couldn’t quite believe it.
“But when they did, all the fans started singing “Paolo Di Canio” at him and they were all having a good time.
“I suppose it hasn’t really sunk in that a billionaire like him was out round the town.”
News of Mr Short’s visit set social networking sites buzzing, with a photo taken of him enjoying his night out with revellers retweeted across Twitter.
Supporter Jimmy Bamborough tweeted: “Ellis Short has just been in the Pritiraj in Seaburn and left a tip for £1,800!!! Wowwzaaaaaa!! #SAFC.”
John Watson wrote: “Class Ellis Short out on the pop in Sunderland and from what I hear been for a curry! Top bloke #safc.”
Another Sunderland fan, Simon Hetherington, tweeted: “Ellis Short out in town haha What a man! #ProperOwner Just don’t spend all our money Ellis!”
Ahead of Saturday’s victory, Mr Short greeted fans in the stands at the Stadium of Light, signing autographs for a group of supporters.
The Black Cats manager Paolo Di Canio recognised the club’s backer during his celebrations at the game, punching the air before turning to point at the chairman.
It capped off a great week for SAFC, who stormed to their best derby win since 1979 when they beat Newcastle United 3-0 at St James’s Park before a Stephane Sessegnon strike helped them defeat Everton for the first time in 12 years.