Sunderland’s newly-appointed non-executive directors, David Jones and Tom Sloanes, have reached out with honest messages to fans of the North East club following the announcement of their new roles.
The club revealed yesterday that Jones and Sloanes had been appointed to their new roles, subject to EFL approval.
In addition to presenting some of Sky Sports’ flagship football programmes, Jones has previously spent three years as a director at Oxford United.
Sloanes, a commercial director at global sports-betting and gaming specialists GVC Group, has worked closely with the North East club over the past two years in his role with their principal partner BETDAQ.
Both men are lifelong Sunderland fans and took to Twitter yesterday to send messages to supporters, revealing their excitement and pride at joining the club.
Thrilled to be on board with @SunderlandAFC … let’s see if we can get people smiling again. Thanks for all the messages. Apologies for the lack of replies now and in the future. Tom is a really good guy. https://t.co/jq8rHm8Fw8
— DAVID JONES (@DavidJonesSky) December 18, 2019
As a Sunderland lad & lifetime @SunderlandAFC supporter, it is a privilege & honour to be invited to work alongside @DavidJonesSky & the SAFC Board. Looking forward to getting stuck in. Thanks for the messages lets "Keep The Red Flag Flying High" #HawayTheLads #Sunderlandtillidie
— Tom Sloanes (@tomsafc) December 18, 2019
Speaking to the Sunderland website, chairman Stewart Donald welcomed the duo to the club and added: “As lifelong Sunderland fans, they share a tremendous passion for the football club and bring with them a wealth of football knowledge and commercial experience.”
The Black Cats have had a difficult start to the season and the addition of new manager Phil Parkinson in October has, so far, not had the desired effect.
Sunderland have won just twice and lost seven times in his 13 games in charge–a record that has seen them knocked out of three competitions and slide down to 12th in League One.
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Sunderland fans will surely love to see these honest messages from the incoming directors, who are clearly very passionate about the club.
You’d hope that in addition to their other expertise, Jones and Sloanes will be able to provide a supporters’ perspective high up the club and help bring a more fan-centric view to decision making.
It looks as though January and the festive period could be a vital period in the Black Cats’ season, with promotion starting to slip out of their grasp.