Sam Allardyce admits it’s ‘nice to be loved’ by Sunderland fans after his experiences with Newcastle United and West Ham.
New boss Allardyce’s appointment on a two-year deal, less than a week after Dick Advocaat resigned as head coach, has largely been welcomed by Sunderland supporters.
The ex-Sunderland defender’s track record in keeping teams in the Premier League, and then stabilising them, holds huge appeal for a club that has endured three near-misses from the drop.
Allardyce admits the warm reception he has received from Sunderland fans has been refreshing too after a section of supporters at former clubs Newcastle and West Ham remained unconvinced.
“When I was at West Ham my wife, Lynne, would constantly read the supporters website to see what new insults were being fired,” he told The Sun on Sunday.
“It upset her but she couldn’t keep away from the screen.
“Now she’s been reading the Sunderland fans’ site and she tells me the reaction has been very positive, which makes me feel very excited to get going.
“Everyone wants to be praised and to feel wanted and I just hope I can give the Sunderland supporters some of the excitement they are looking for.
“It’s nice to be loved. But at West Ham and Newcastle I was faced by passionate fans that made themselves heard if they weren’t happy.”