Sunderland goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin has backed new manager Phil Parkinson to provide the club with the ‘winning formula’ they need to win promotion from League One this season.
Following the sacking of Jack Ross last week, Parkinson was announced as the club’s new manager on Thursday morning, with the 51-year-old set to take charge of Sunderland for the first time on Saturday afternoon, when the Black Cats travel to Adams Park to face Wycombe.
While Parkinson will be a new face to the majority of Sunderland’s players, McLaughlin is already familiar with the new Sunderland boss from the time they spent together at Bradford between 2011 and 2014, meaning he is well placed to comment on the new appointment.
Does Phil Parkinson have the ability to deliver promotion at Sunderland?
Speaking to the club’s website about the appointment of Parkinson, McLaughlin was keen to stress the importance of the new manager’s previous promotions from this level with Colchester and Bolton to Sunderland’s own push for a place in the Championship next season, claiming: “It’s important that the gaffer has experience of getting club’s out of this league.
“For people on the outside it provides confidence because he doesn’t need to prove he has what it takes They are facts and you can’t deny them.
“The system and philosophy they use has been proven. It’s been a winning formula before, and they have worked in large clubs with big expectations.
“I am sure they can do the same as they have done previously and be successful.”
Discussing the approach that Parkinson and his assistant Steve Parkin will take with their squad, the goalkeeper continued: “They like to have their teams very organised and make demands of having a certain work rate.
“They want to make sure that all of the basics are boxed off first and foremost and then that provides a platform to play from. This is nothing new to players because it’s about doing all of the basics correctly every single time.
“If you can do that over 90 minutes, then it will give you a solid platform to go and dominate games.”
Sunderland go into their clash with Wycombe ninth in the League One table, having won five and drawn four of their 11 league games so far this season.
I don’t really think you can argue with what McLaughlin has said here.
For all the scepticism there seems to be around Parkinson’s appointment at the Stadium of Light, there can be no questioning that the 51-year-old knows exactly how to get promoted out of this division, which is just what Sunderland need this year.
As for the longer-term future of the club, I do think it is worth noting that Parkinson pulled off something of a great escape with a then crisis bound Bolton during their first season in the Championship under him, which suggests he may even be capable of stabilising the Black Cats in the second tier.
It certainly seems as though Sunderland’s players are behind Parkinson now, and I imagine that the club’s fans will follow suit, particularly if they do indeed start to make moves towards those all-important promotion spots.