For consecutive seasons Sunderland fans could have done with the distraction of a stiff drink while watching the woeful Black Cats suffer back to back relegations.
Drowning sorrows was the name of the game as the team plummeted through the trap doors.
Like the rest of the football watching public, however, they were bound by 33-year-old legislation forbidding the consumption of alcohol in view of the pitch.
As Sunderland march towards a quick return to the Championship (fingers crossed), moves are afoot to bring back booze to the footy-watching public.
It’s about time.
Why should the sport being watched dictate whether you can drink a pint or two during the game?
Cricket and rugby fans are permitted to sink ales at their seats, but football fans have to stick to the concourses. It makes little sense.
Yes, football has greater problems with disorder than other sports, but the game has changed, almost beyond recognition, to the one in the era when the booze ban was first introduced.
The family-friendly atmosphere and improved facilities have resulted in a shift towards a more welcoming match day experience.
Many fans like the idea of refreshments during the game and the clubs too would welcome the extra revenue it would bring.
Those who have to police the games will have their concerns, of course, as too will many other members of the public.
These concerns can be answered with pilot schemes carefully monitoring a lifting of the booze ban. If it works, let’s kick this ban into touch.
Is turning Sunderland's home ground into the Stadium of Bud Light really such a bad idea?
Who knows, rather than drowning sorrows, Sunderland fans may soon be popping the champagne corks and toasting promotion from the comfort of their stadium seats!