Sunderland boss Jack Ross has been blown away by the 'magnitude' of the club after moving to Wearside in the summer.
The 42-year-old left Scottish side St Mirren to join the Black Cats back in May, after Sunderland had suffered back-to-back relegations to League One.
But the club's demotion to the third tier hasn't dampened the mood on Wearside, with home attendances still averaging over 30,000.
“It’s just the magnitude of the club that’s most difficult to describe to people," Ross told the Daily Record.
“The support we have, the intensity, the scrutiny we’re under. We’re averaging 30,000, which would be a League One record if we keep it up.
“We closed the top deck of the stadium for the season but they reckon if we continue the way we’re going we might have to open it back to its 49,000."
New Executive Director Charlie Methven has challenged supporters to break the 40,000 barrier for the Black Cats' Boxing Day clash against Bradford at the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland's away support has been even more impressive this campaign, and the Wearsiders have sold their full allocation for every away fixture this season - league and cup.
Many managers have compared encounters with Sunderland to a cup tie, while Ross has liken the fixtures to Old Firm games.
“We’ve sold out every away allocation – we took 5000 to Coventry, 3000 to Bradford, 1800 to Plymouth," added Ross.
"It feels like when I played for Clyde or Falkirk and the Old Firm came to our place.
“You carry this constant… burden’s the wrong word, so’s expectation – responsibility, probably.
“But the rewards are fantastic because I’m leading a club that’s out of this world.”
Ross has taken a hands-on approach since taking charge at the Stadium of Light - and admits he's still learning when to take a step back.
“I’m in here with the cleaners at the back of seven every morning," said Ross.
“I should probably delegate more, and I’m getting better at it, but I’m a young manager and I still love taking training.
"The demands on my time here make it a bit tougher though."