Stewart Donald praises Juan Sartori after he swapped 'sexy' for Sunderland

Stewart Donald has praised Juan Sartori
Stewart Donald has praised Juan Sartori

Sunderland chairman Stewart Donald has praised the enthusiasm of fellow shareholder Juan Sartori.

The Uruguayan bought a 20 per cent stake in the club earlier this summer and is already relishing the chance to be involved with the club.

It's not the first time that he has been involved in football having spent time with Monaco, whom his father-in-law owns, earlier on in life.

Sartori was once again at the Stadium of Light for Saturday's game against Fleetwood - despite his wife having given birth a day previously - and brought several friends with him.

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And all enjoyed soaking up the Wearside atmosphere with Sartori's enthusiasm clear to see, with Donald believing this can prove to be infectious.

While the 37-year-old naturally brings a business background to the Black Cats, it is that passion and willingness to help the club that has stood out for Donald so far - and has made the Sunderland chief glad that Sartori chose to swap 'sexy' Monaco for Sunderland.

"He's there commercially and financially as well, if we need him and he's right at the forefront of that," he said, speaking to the Roker Rapport podcast.
"I think the biggest thing with him is that, having not done a business with him before but knowing about his businesses, I know what he's going to bring on the business side.

"On the footballing side, which I think is absolutely important, he's unbelievably excited.

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"I know he's been in the terraces but he's on all the time - 'I'm watching the game, is so and so playing, I can't wait for this, I'll get over for that game'.

"As a foreign investor, he could do what a lot of them have done and write a cheque and see what happens. But he's absolutely, 'what can I do on the footballing side with the South Americans? what can I bring there?'.

"What he's doing, which is what we really need him to do, is get really excited about the football, and he is excited about the potential.

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"You could get carried away with Juan's enthusiasm. I think at the end of the first game, we were talking and I said it was a good start but there was a long way to go, and Juan said 'no, we'll win every game!'.

"You want that level of enthusiasm and I wasn't 100% sure, with him being South American, used to warmer climates and involved in a sexy football club at Monaco; Sunderland to an Englishman is fantastic but what would Juan make of it?

"He's come up and is absolutely loving it all."