In the ever-growing list of football documentaries, Sunderland ‘Til I Die is among the ones to earn almost universal praise.
The documentary, which followed the Black Cats through a disastrous Championship campaign and laid bare problems on and off the pitch for all to see, was met with widespread praise when it released last year and will be returning for a second series.
Fans from around the country sat down to watch Sunderland’s demise, partly because of morbid fascination but also to see just how easy their club could end up down a similar path.
The Netflix special was also praised by Sunderland fans, who appreciated the no holds barred view that was given and put their plight in front of a wider audience.
That’s a stance Black Cats youngster Mbunga Kimpioka agrees with, saying the documentary was good for the club.
“I’ve watched the series. I think it’s good; people understand what it’s been like at the club and how the fans feel,” he told Aftonbladet.
“You got used to the fact that there were often two, three cameramen a bit everywhere and filmed.
“You had to think a little about what you said and did. We had small cameras on the walls; sometimes it felt like they were everywhere – outside the dressing room, the gym, the restaurant.
“The result of the TV series was good and now and last season the aura wasn’t as negative around the club.”
Last season saw Kimpioka finally break through at the Stadium of Light, making four of appearances in the senior team as he managed 26 minutes of football in League One.
What he showed left Sunderland fans hopeful they had a young starlet in the making though and he says he thinks he is on track, despite the Black Cat’s issues.
“I decided to move to Sunderland early, and then things have not been so good for the club, but I am satisfied with my development,” he added.
“I have grown into life as a foreign professional and developed as a player.
“When I came to Sunderland Sebastian Larsson, Joel Asoro and Oscar Krusnell were in the club. It was nice to have Swedes there in the beginning. Now none of them are left.
“The situation has stabilized. Sunderland is a big club that should be in the Premier League. I strongly believe the club will start climbing.”