After 99 years the final whistle blew on Roker Park in May 1997. The last ever league game was an emotionally charged affair against Everton on 3rd May, which Sunderland won 3-0. It was the end of era in typical Sunderland style though and the team still needed to win the final away game of the season against Wimbledon to guarantee safety but lost 1-0.
The Farewell to Roker Park match, the final ceremonial game against Liverpool, was played in front of a 22,000 full house on 13th May against the backdrop of relegation to The Championship. “It was emotional leaving Roker Park as I started going to matches with my dad in 1956 but I knew in my heart that Roker was the past and the Stadium of Light was the future,” said Bob.
” It was difficult for everyone to lift themselves after the Wimbledon match and travel back to Sunderland for the final ever match at Roker. The season had started with such excitement and optimism for the future. We were moving to a new stadium but were in the wrong division, which was a huge blow but we knew we had to close the chapter on Roker Park after 99 years in style.”