SUNDERLAND do not plan an open-top bus parade on their return to the city – even if they win the League Cup.
The decision was taken by the club with the full backing of head coach Gus Poyet who is happy to turn his attention immediately towards the FA Cup quarter-final the following weekend and then the battle for Premier League survival.
An open-top bus parade was held after Sunderland’s FA Cup final defeat in 1992, with Malcolm Crosby’s players saluted by fans in an unforgettable show of support as the open-top bus made its way from Belmont through Houghton and the city of Sunderland to Seaburn.
And many would have liked the chance to show similar appreciation to Poyet’s players this time around.
But the circumstances were different then – it was a Saturday and the last game of the season.
Given tomorrow’s game is a Sunday, it makes it difficult to plan for a parade.
No-one would deny Sunderland deserve one for reaching this year’s final, even more so should they win it!
But Poyet is happy for himself and his players to continue focusing purely on the football.
“An open-top bus parade?” he said. “I don’t even want to plan if we do win.
“I just want to make sure we do something important for the club, the chairman, (who nobody talks about), and for the fans who have waited so long.
“And I want it to give us an extra incentive in the league too.
“The other way – people say what happens if you lose?
“But we play a cup game the week after, so it’s not that bad.
“It’s not like it’s the end of the world if we lose – we can recover.
“The cup final at Wembley is massive for us but it is not the end, we will move on quickly.”