Lynden Gooch didn’t get to start Sunderland’s trip to Portsmouth last night, but was introduced off the bench with a shade over 20 minutes remaining.
Sent on to protect a 0-0 result and a 1-0 aggregate lead, Gooch showed his trademark endeavour and commitment, as Jack Ross’s side got the job done and booked a second trip to Wembley this season.
That’s what it’s all about for the Black Cats – the goal this season was promotion and that means this final will mean even more than the Checkatrade showpiece did earlier this year.
To help get the club back on an upward trajectory, players with an attitude like Gooch’s have been essential and that might explain the outpouring of praise for what was essentially a cameo appearance last night.
Gooch was showered with praise by the supporters who are clearly buzzing about what lies in wait, as a meeting with either Charlton or Doncaster awaits.
The American midfielder may have to bide his time and accept a spot on the bench for that one too, but there’s no doubt he’ll give it his all if he gets on and that’s a welcome change from the previous few years for Sunderland fans…
Loved your passion punching the badge. Thats what we want
— Tyler (@safc_tyler) May 16, 2019
Fantastic effort when you came on Lynden. Did exactly what was needed. Greetings from Portland!
— Tony Mills (@TM_PDX) May 16, 2019
GOOOOOOCH!!! 🇺🇸 keep it up we are proud of you
— Haway the viper (@Spina13Colada) May 17, 2019
Outstanding Gucci lad. Loves the club. One of our own.
— Richy Duggan (@richyduggan) May 16, 2019
Well played when you came on. Great technique and smart decision making (clearly Santa Cruz Breaker roots 😉). Hope you didn’t get too banged up and will be rooting for you lads when you play at Wembley. 🇺🇸🌊☀️🌲🌁#NorCal
— Steve Eisner (@1westhamfan) May 17, 2019
Fantastic passion. Never an easy fixture against them. But every single player did us proud and battled for the result.
— Thor (@iaindean3006) May 16, 2019
— Callum Iley (@ileyACAB) May 16, 2019
Phenomenal down the stretch today @LyndenGooch best of luck in the finals!
— Sean Reilly (@Seanysean730) May 16, 2019
Class you and Grigg after coming on
— Matty Cain (@MattyCain2) May 16, 2019
Class cameo tonight. Played for the shirt as always.
— Stu (@tenchylad) May 16, 2019