A video emerges of Sunderland fans losing their cool with manager Lee Johnson following the playoff defeat against Lincoln City on Saturday.
Lincoln resisted Sunderland’s gutsy fightback to reach the League One playoff final in what was an extraordinary second leg at the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats trailed 2-0 following the first leg, but Aiden McGeady teed up goals for Ross Stewart and Charlie Wyke to wipe out the lead by half time.
However it was the Imps that improved straight after the restart and, after Regan Poole’s header hit the bar, Tom Hopper headed home the vital goal.
Jorge Grant’s spot-kick was saved by keeper Lee Burge and McGeady hit the post as Michael Appleton’s side dealt with late pressure to set up a Wembley date with Blackpool next Sunday.
Defeat for Sunderland means they have now failed in six play-off campaigns and will now endured a fourth season in the third tier of English football.
Only three teams had previously managed to overcome a 2-0 first-leg deficit or more to win through to the third-tier playoff final.
Not even 10,000 Black Cats fans in attendance could help Sunderland to match the achievements of Bradford in 1996, Northampton in 1998, and Yeovil in 2007.
A group of supporters had a few choice words to say to Lee Johnson, who calmly tried to speak back.
One fan could be heard: “Charlie Wyke has just told us to fuck off… The big divvy!”
Have a listen at what was said by clicking play below, it’s quite the watch…
Sunderland fans not too happy with Lee Johnson then 😳
— The Second Tier (@secondtierpod) May 22, 2021
“There’s going to be a natural evolution of the squad now,” Lee Johnson said to the media after the game.
“Some players will have played their last game there today for various reasons. Some we may want to keep but can’t afford to, some we might not want and will want to move on, and others we might want to retain and will give them our best offer.
” It’s a sad day because you do build a rapport with these players, but the club has also showed today the potential power we’ve got – the pressing game we played in the first half, the attitude from the fans to get our pressing game going.
“That as 10,000, I can’t wait to see what it’s like when there’s 42,000 in there. I thought the boys gave everything, and that’s obviously a minimum standard, and we played well on the day too.
“You’ve got to give credit to Lincoln for a fantastic season – they’ve used the loan market very well. I think our recruitment becomes the difference, to be honest with you. That is the summer challenge – to make sure, potentially on a slightly reduced budget, that we actually recruit very well.”
“I fully believe in the club, there’s no doubting that,” Johnson added.
“I came into the club knowing how difficult it was going to be. We’ve had an unbelievable run of things that have gone on – some you know, and some you don’t know – and we’ve obviously continued to try to plough away.
“In the background, we’ve got a sporting director and owner working very hard, and a new head of recruitment and data, and that’s a process that’s ever-evolving, but that I don’t have to be involved in until now.
“We will set down and reflect on the season, and have some really honest conversations and be brutally honest about what went well and what didn’t go well. There’ll be changes.
“It’s inevitable there’ll be changes, and the test will be whether we can make those changes for the better.
“Football’s not in a great place, and that could work for us or it could work against us. Inevitably, we’ll be judged by the quality of our recruitment in the summer.”
“You know the expectation here and in this division, it’s to get promoted,” he said.
🗣 “The boys are absolutely devastated.”
🗣 “We have to go again, it’s as simple as that.”
Lee Johnson speaks to Sky Sports after his Sunderland side lost to Lincoln in the League One play-offs. pic.twitter.com/TbwkkQd7Nw
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) May 22, 2021
“At the same time, we’ve got to make decisions for the long term.
“If we make enough of the right decisions along the way, whether that’s promoting the youth player at the right time, recruiting the star number nine, whatever, we make those right decisions and it will come to us.
“You have seen today, if we can harness the power of the fans, use that in our pressing system, we can create really good, high-tempo spectacles.
“Your home form can then be the difference over 23 games.
“We definitely need players who can play at a high-intensity.
“Robust players who can play at that tempo and don’t get injured, and the footballing ability as well.
“We’ve got a great academy and a chance to develop those players.
“We want more and more of them and we’ve got to supplement them with top players at this level. The size of the club gives us the chance to draw those players in and anyone watching today would see that this could be a really powerful beast.
“Straight away we’ve got to start.
“No time to rest, no time to feel sorry for ourselves.
“We’ve got sit down with the board, the Sporting Director, over the next four or five days and get this plan right to go and be successful.
“It’s not the day to talk about recruitment but we’ve got a good team in place and we know, you saw Ross Stewart today, how well he played and the potential he’s got, we know we can attract players over that quality.”
“Honestly I can’t repeat it.” 🤐
Michael Appleton reflects on guiding his Lincoln side to the play-off final and his half-time team talk.
Watch the reaction on Sky Sports Football 📺 pic.twitter.com/3hzh4a1KLj
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) May 22, 2021
Lincoln’s Michael Appleton: “I was really disappointed with the firs half, I did not recognise us as a team. I just got after them with a little bit of old school. I just wanted to see personalities, be brave and get on the ball, pass the ball and we got that in the second half.
“I just said that to them at the end that we have passed a massive test in the second half because we were up against it in the first half, we had a lot of young players who had not experienced that before. And for them to come and turn it around in the second half like they did, I’m just delighted for them.
“They (the half-time subs) were outstanding, they changed the game and you need and want that from your subs. Sometimes you do not get the impact that you want, but today they gave us the impact we needed.”
Fans reacted as a video emerges of Sunderland fans losing their cool with manager Lee Johnson…
Same vibes pic.twitter.com/dLGSbIczLm
— chris robson (@chrisrobson13) May 22, 2021
— somerset smith (@crispfan99) May 22, 2021
@RobSc0tt: “Charlie Wyke has just told us to fuck off!” I can’t imagine why.
@Youdley24: Sunderland til I die series 3 looks promising
@mdaniel8812: Classic Sunderland. You can’t consistently fail to get promoted from league one and blame every single manager every time. The club were flying until their toxic fanbase came back into the stadium. Anyone who watched the documentary can see 50% of the issue is the fans.
@Dbez15: Can anyone translate this?
@NoahRobson13: Embarrassment of a football club. Fans deserve it as well.
@GeorgetheHall: Honestly, to beat Sunderland you just have to not concede in the first 20 minutes and let the majority of the fans jump on their team’s backs. They beat themselves sometimes because of how quickly they turn, there’s a lot of clubs like that
@JacobKirkbride: Bet these were the same idiots booing the players taking the knee before kick off as well
@Tom_ncfc1902: Can’t someone explain what their beef is? It sounded like it went further than simply that they didn’t get promoted
@justcalledtosay: Charlie Wyke told the Mackems to fuck off. Loves the Boro doesn’t he.
@DHT_MrP: This is embarrassing.
@89MJU: Hope Charlie Wyke did tell them to fuck off me like. Not a brain cell or a set of teeth between this lot.
@DanMowbz: But I thought Charlie Wyke was your savior.. Best thing since Kevin Philips they said. Hahahahahah #SAFC
@smit112: Ha! Charlie Wyke the big divvy. I’m sure without Wyke they wouldn’t have even made the play-offs.
@FazRallerrrr: He doesn’t deserve that
@dannyjlind_: Phaaaaah, every single season. Never change Sunderland 😭🤦♂️
@simonw91: Why do they keep doing this to managers? Go to the pub or work or something
@JackPears93: Rattled 😂😂😂
Twitters users continued to react as the video emerges of Sunderland fans losing their cool with manager Lee Johnson…
@ReeceBoast: Absolute joke of a club this has turned out to be
@ethan73103047: Finished club
@Jackobrfc999: Sunderland failure. Lee Johnson tears. Charlie Wyke mistake for goal. Not a bad day of play off football
@olpafc_: State of them, can’t handle losing
@woodylad83: Charlie wyke telling fans to fuck off after the game when he was going to his car, maguire saying he will only be here is johnson isnt max power hinting he was away and onien said he hasnt been offered a contract yet wyke proper lost it to be fair.
@mattywyke: Sunderland fans. Your man with 31 goals this season played today with a floating rib from Wednesday. Charlie is absolutely distraught. He blames himself, where is your empathy? I’ve only ever wanted the best for you lot. Never a bad word spoken about the club. Full support 24/7
@acacia_jude: These fans are absolutely disgraceful and embarrassing by abusing Lee Johnson and the players when they tried their best to win the game today on aggregate to equalise. Those fans don’t deserve to be Sunderland fans at all as they should be ashamed of themselves for that today.
@anorthernbullet: What’s the fucking point
@tazzlor___: Just embarrassing really and people wonder why no one wants to come to / play for Sunderland
@callumr2004: Think I speak for all the non delusional sunderland fans but this is just not on like
@LisgoSkol: Not on this like, it’s embarrassing behaviour.
@MPea88ftm: Not the time or place man.. Emotions running high. They can’t say anything right in this situation in my opinion.