Sunderland AFC’s most unusual fan is tipping the Black Cats for victory in the biggest match of the year.
Rosie the duck, who will turn 20 in August, is a lifelong fan of the Stadium of Light team and is ruffling a few feathers ahead of the Tyne-Wear derby.
As a dedicated fan, we asked her to put her knowledge of the club to the test, and tell us what she thought the scores on the doors would be for Sunday – and she didn’t duck the issue.
It’s going to be a Sunderland victory!
Rosie even has her own strip – in fact, you might have seen her wearing it as she relaxes in the garden of her Silksworth home, where she lives with owners Pam and Ted Watson.
The beloved pet duck, who was bought for one of the couple’s daughters almost two decades ago, is a firm fixture in the village.
Local youngsters often flock to see Rosie as she makes a splash in her pond.
Along with the rest of her family, who are all Sunderland fans, Rosie is hoping for a Black Cats win on Sunday.
Pam, 63, said that the duck inherited her first SAFC strip more than 10 years ago, from one of the couple’s grandchildren.
“She wears it on special occasions, like when we went to Wembley last year.
“She certainly wears it for every derby game,” the mum-of-two said.
“Rosie has grown up with all of the grandchildren and she’s part of the family.
“Everybody has a dog or a cat – but we have got a duck.”
Pam and Ted have two daughters, Lisa and Melanie, and four grandchildren named Karlie, Taylor, Lincoln and Mylie.
When Lisa was pregnant with Karlie, who is now 19, sister Melanie was told she could pick something to buy – and picked Rosie, and partner duck Harry, to bring home as tiny chicks.
Northumbria Police are reminding fans that buses have again been subsidised by Sunderland AFC for Sunday’s match.
More than 25 coaches will start boarding at the Stadium of Light at 10.30am, but for the first time fans could be picked up from Sunderland city centre.
Fans travelling from the stadium will be prioritised, but any coaches left empty after the 11.15am departure will travel to Station Street to transport any away fans with a ticket to the game.
Northumbria Police Operations Commander, Chief Superintendent Steve Neill, said: “We would urge fans to consider this as the best option and contact the club to get a bus pass.”