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Why new manager Jack Ross is the man to revive Sunderland

Dave Burin | 29 May 2018

Black Cats aiming for return to the Championship

He may be little-known in English football, but new Sunderland boss Jack Ross has won plenty of acclaim north of the border.

As St Mirren boss, the Scot took the Buddies from apparent relegation certainties to title winners in 18 months. But the expectation is higher on Wearside, and the standard tougher in League One than in the Scottish Championship.

The Coral News Team examine how the up-and-coming gaffer could fare at the Stadium of Light.

Terrific transfer business a feather in his cap

The Black Cats’ recent takeover by Stewart Donald means Ross will have rather more to spend than he did at St Mirren. But while the size of the transfer kitty may be new to him, the art of savvy transfer business isn’t.

As manager of the Paisley club, Ross brought in some real talents on a shoestring. Former Crewe Alexandra defender Harry Davis offered both pace and creativity, whilst Gavin Reilly – signed from Heart of Midlothian last summer – scored 22 goals in 44 outings in 2017/18.

They’re just a couple of the key men he added to the Buddies ranks, transforming the previous campaign’s ailing squad with vital additions in virtually every position.

Long-term future and North-East links

The Scot began his managerial career by starting the revival of Alloa Athletic – turning a club in freefall into a solid League 1 outfit. And considering he’s overseen that, and the resurgence of St. Mirren, it’s easy to forget Ross is just 41-years-old.

He’s improved year on year since first taking the reins in Clackmannanshire, with his Buddies side of 2018 a far more organised and clinical side than any squad he had at Alloa.

While moving into the football fervour of the North-East is new for Ross as a manager, he already has some idea of the passion and expectation in the region.

The new man at Sunderland has a successful spell as a Hartlepool United on his CV, helping Pools to a play-off berth in League One in 2004-05.

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