New Black Cats owner Stewart Donald has wasted little time in appointing a new manager. Just days after taking over the club, Donald has appointed former St Mirren boss Jack Ross as the new Sunderland manager.
Black Cats Appoint Jack Ross
On Wednesday morning, club owner Donald had news for fans waiting on an announcement: “On the manager front, we’ve agreed a deal this morning, we’re just drawing up contracts now. Hopefully there will be news soon. I’m absolutely jumping up and down with excitement.”
Later in the day, Donald added that he hoped to announce Sunderland’s new manager by close of play on Thursday. Once St Mirren gave their permission for Jack Ross to speak to Sunderland, the deal was finalised between the club and their number one target.
It was revealed today that Jack Ross had signed a two-year deal with the Wearside club with the option of a third year. His assistant at St Mirren, James Fowler will also be heading to the Stadium of Light. Sunderland have paid St Mirren a six figure sum in compensation.
The 41 year old Scot, who has recently won the Scottish PFA Manager of the Year award, leaves St Mirren in a better state than when he arrived. He saved them from relegation in his first season and then won promotion to the Scottish Premier League by winning the Championship by 12 points last season.
The Scottish club offered Ross a new deal, but the lure of England and a big club like Sunderland was too much to resist. Ipswich Town were also said to be interested but Sunderland worked quickly and got their man. St Mirren chief executive Tony Fitzpatrick said this about Ross leaving: “There is no other way to describe it, it really feels like there has been a loss in the family.”
Hard Work Begins Now
The new manager will now need to get to work and assess those players willing to play in League One, identify players he would like to bring in and move on those he doesn’t want or aren’t up for the long hard fight ahead.
The summer will see an overhaul in players and staff at the Stadium of Light. Something which, after two successive relegations is needed if the Black Cats are to get back into the Championship at the first attempt. Expect many comings and goings on Wearside over the summer ahead just their second ever season in English footballs third tier.