Sunderland AFC won their 4rth league championship in 1901/02, topping the table with 44 points; three more than second placed Everton.
To celebrate the triumph the directors arranged a celebratory dinner on 22 May 1902 at The Grand hotel in the then town. Below is the Dinner menu that was produced for the occasion, together with the Annual report of the football club. A ceramic was also produced to celebrate the event.
Annual Report 17th June 1902
The annual ordinary meeting of Sunderland A.F.C. Ltd was held in the Grand Hotel with Mr J T Henderson in the chair. There was a good attendance and among those present ware Messrs S Todd, Jas Henderson, A Murray Jnr and C Christian directors.
The Annual report was as follows:- Last year we were able to report a gain of £987-6s-4d and it is now our pleasant duty to record a still better result in the balance of profit being a total of £1,241-17s-8d after allowing 10% – £790-10s-2d for depreciation. Reciepts from home league matches again show an increase and they would have been even greater but for poor weather when Aston Villa, one of the big drawing teams visited Roker Park. Reciepts for the match fell short of last seasons takings by £670.
The match against Newcastle Utd drew a record gate with the number of paying spectators being 34,819 with reciepts of £1,153. From a playing point of view the season was most the successful in the history of the club. As is well known the first team won the league championship for the 4th time though hopes of doing well in the English Cup were not realised. The “A” team also did well in retaining possession of the Durham Senior Cup, the Tyneside Alliance and were runners up in the Northern Alliance.
The third team werte bracketed with Elswick Harriers for top place in the Northern Combination and also won the Mid Tyne Charity Shield. The attendances at our matches during the season totalled 268,629 as opposed to 262,388 last season. The players who served the club so well last season have been re-engaged and we are confidently anticipating even better results next season.
The company articles provide that the directors shall retire but being eligible they again offer themselves for re-election. The auditors messrs Neilson and Brown also offer themselves for re election.
Of 34 first team matches played 19 were won, 6 were drawn and 9 lost with a goals ratio of 51 – 35. In cup games and friendly matches 12 were played with 6 won, 2 drawn and 4 lost with a goals ratio of 102-39.
The balance sheet shows liabilities amounting to £7,308-17s-11d and that of the authorised capital of £6,000 in £1 Shares £1823 have been taken up in respect of which calls unpaid £108-15s. the assetts represented by the stands, fencing, club house etc are valued at £7,117-5s-6d, outfits £40, guarantee to Blackpool FC £15, sundry credits £136-12s-5d.
The revenue for the year ending April 30th amounted to £1,902 and was as follows:- Expenditure by matches:- Home league £310-15s-11d; away matches £443-17s-6d; friendly H & A matches £244-6s-8d; English Cup ties £75-7s-2d; “A” and 3rd team H & A matches £255-15s-6d; players wages £3,549-10s; outfits medical fees etc £98-4s; trainers wages £150-2s-6d; special training £244-9s-5d; Fees and levies £22-13s-6d, printing etc £147-10s-7d.
Working expenditure:- Rents, rates telephone etc £179-5s-10d, ground and house rents etc £554-11s-8d; caretakers wages £91-5s; salaries £192; transfers etc £547-6s-4d; petty expenses £129-0s-8d, secretaries expenses £18-0s-4d; newspapers £4-9s-6d; Bank interest and charges £238-0s-8d; insurance and storage of pictures £3-18s, balance carried to profit and loss account £2,032-13s-0d; Total £9,533-5s-0d.
Recipts:- from Home league matches £ 6,685-9s-9d; “A” league matches £60; friendlies H & A £480 10s-6d; English Cup £1,089-18s-1d, “A” and 3rd team £343-19s-11d; members and ticket holders £118-6s-9d; advertising £25; transfer of players £750 Total £9,533-5s-0d.
The report was adopted unanimously. The chairman compared the financial reporrt with the corresponding items in last seasons accounts. He then congratulated the team on having won the league championship. They certainly had a hard struggle to win it and when one considers that the difference between Bolton and the top teams was only 16 or 17 points it shows that the teams are getting on a level with each other. There were times when they had hard lines in getting beaten by very close margins.
The chairman then referred to the long distances the club had to travel to fulfil away fixtures and said the wear and tear of long journeys had a great effect on the players. He regretted the early exit from the English Cup which they had tried for years to win but always seemed to be dogged by bad luck. This year they had hard luck because the ground on which they played Newcastle was not fit for play and the game in his humble opinion should not have been played. At any rate they lost and could make no better of it.
The financial position of the club is improving every year and if they have another year as good as the last one he trusted that the whole of the clubs liabilities would be wiped out. Mr Henderson expressed the clubs regret at the untimely death of Matthew Ferguson on 12th of June. The report was adopted
In answer to questions the chairman stated the club held no lease on the Roker Park ground from the landlords (laughter). He also stated that 1614 shares were held by persons other than the landlords. The following appointments were then made. Patrons;- the most noble The Marquiss of Londonderry, Sir W.T. Doxford MP., Mr S Storey, Mr Richard Murray, Mr J.S.A.Pemberton JP, and councillor W.M.Roche. Directors Messrs J.P.Henderwson, S Todd, Jas Henderson, R Murray Jnr, F.W.Taylor and C Christian. Audiotrs Messrs Neilson and Brown.
A vote of confidence in the widow of the late Mr Ferguson was passed and the meeting ended.