As Jake put it, 'like two cheeks of the same a***'

Nick Donaldson: as Jake put it, ‘like two cheeks of the same a***’

So the HAWAYS are over
for another season. Our judging panel has had its say and, heaven forbid, a Mag has emerged in first place with Everton and Stoke City supporters – the latter our former manager Denis Smith – in joint second. A Burnley fan collects the editor’s special award, having come fourth.

Nick Donaldson, the NUFC-supporting winner, has chosen the following aberration as his prize …

This is what the judges said about his interview, which appeared in full at

Paul “Sobs” Dobson, A Love Supreme assistant editor:

”… it pains me to say this – the most balanced of the lot was from our magpie Nick Donaldson He didn’t fall into the nostalgia trap, but still managed to be just sentimental enough to catch the imagination. The empathy was nice as well.

Eric Bowyers, London-exiled SAFC support:

“Best WAY by a country mile in my opinion. This guy understands what makes supporters tick. He is just like us, just wears a different shirt. He says we’re ‘peas in a pod’ and adds see your ‘cuekery beuk’. He knows his team is shite but it doesn’t bother him too much, has no great aspirations either. Sensible answers to all questions, I could have read much more from this fella.”

Pete Sixsmith (alone in not putting Nick in first place – he was Sixer’s third):

“I liked his take on never having met a Sunderland fan until he was 16 – part of the disadvantages of growing up in Benwell and also the mental picture of him running through gardens in the genteel suburb of Seaburn on his way to Roker Park. Brilliant description of Michael Owen as a “chicken hearted boy-man who had as much feeling for Newcastle United as Niall Quinn.”

Malcolm Dawson, deputy editor of Salut! Sunderland:

“Excellent read not tarnished by inter-club prejudice. Some splendid analysis of the plight of The Mags at the time, Pardew as a manager and Ashley, Kinnear and Owen as people. Not so good on the forecasts though! [Nick tipped West Brom and Leicester to go down with Burnley and NUFC to finish 10th! He got our placing right though! – Ed]”

Monsieur Salut offered no explanatory comments, just felt Nick’s interview was head and shoulders above all others.

So what was said about the runners-up?

Hannah Myers (Everton)

“Good, detailed responses with a knowledge of football in general and of her team coming through. It is obvious she sees them live and not second hand via internet etc. I don’t see people who have to watch on TV or via the inter-web as any less committed necessarily BUT you never get a complete picture on the small screen as you can’t see what players do off the ball. Hannah not only watches the games she can see what is going on.” – Malcolm

Denis Smith (Stoke City)

“Hampered by the fact that, due to professional commitments, he couldn’t expand more on certain subjects, but still good to get an opinion from inside the game.”

Duncan Sutcliffe, Burnley

“Some bias here as Duncan is a friend but he also supports a club that epitomises the strength of the English system. Both Duncan and Scottt (see above) have witnessed last game heroics to stop their clubs from slipping into the Conference, so they know hardship and success. This was a beautifully written piece from someone who is not a pro, does not write for a fanzine but who loves his club as much as we love ours.” – Sixer (who put Duncan in first place)

Nick having chosen a Newcastle top from Campo Retro, the choice that remains for Hannah and Denis is between

* Personalised Football Gifts

A framed matchday programme featuring the winner’s team (or something else if not available)


* When Saturday Comes:

When Saturday Comes: 'half-decent' football magazine, entirely decent Who are You? co-sponsors

When Saturday Comes: ‘half-decent’ football magazine, entirely decent Who are You? co-sponsors

A year’s subscription to the top footie magazine

And finally, Duncan will receive a prize from our regular prize sponsors at Philosophy Football

Hearts in right - oops, left - place

Hearts in right – oops, left – place

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Salut! Sunderland is written, illustrated and edited by - and principally for - supporters of Sunderland AFC. The site aims to be sufficiently literate and entertaining to appeal to people who do not follow SAFC but enjoy good football writing.

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