Sunderland defender reveals details of meeting with new owner Kyril Louis-Dreyfus
That’s according to defender Dion Sanderson, who revealed that the Black Cats' new billionaire chairman held talks with the first-team after his purchase of a controlling stake in the club was approved by the EFL this week.
Louis-Dreyfus was in the stands to watch Sunderland beat Burton Albion on Saturday afternoon and has been a regular presence at the Academy of Light in recent weeks.
And that shows no signs of changing now the deal has been given the green light, with Sanderson confirming the new owner has already given the players a ‘good understanding’ of his plans for the club.
Speaking after the win at Burton, the Sunderland loanee said: “There's always things going on and the players are interested in what's going on around the club.
"We had the meeting about it and all the players are delighted. It's change, we adapt to it and it's good for the club.
"We had a little meeting with him and he spoke to us. We had a good chat, all the boys, and he's shown us a good understanding of what he wants and what he wants from us.”
The confirmation of Louis-Dreyfus’ takeover formed part of a fine week for the Black Cats, which saw the confirmation of a third trip to Wembley in as many years book-ended by two impressive wins in League One.
It’s a week that has given supporters some much-needed optimism, and it has also provided a major morale boost in the dressing room – as Sanderson explains.
"It's been brilliant.
"I'm delighted for the boys winning that semi-final and then to go on and get the three points today, I couldn't be any happier.
"These are the games we do lose points on, and I think everyone has that understanding that we can't lose games. We've got to respect the opposition, but it's important that we got the three points.”
The final win of the week at Burton Albion was even more impressive given Sunderland’s defensive injury crisis, which saw Sanderson the only recognised central defender in the squad.
And while pleased that he is in-line for a regular run in the side, the loanee was quick to shift the focus onto the versatility shown by his teammates.
"We had players playing in different positions, positions they weren't used to, and I think they all did well,” said Sanderson.
"Credit to everyone, the staff and the players for that.
“I'm happy that I'm getting playing time, but I'm just delighted for the boys. Hopefully this is the start of a good run of wins and I couldn't be more chuffed.”
The focus now for Sunderland remains on climbing up the table, with Fleetwood Town the next opponents as Lee Johnson’s side look to rack-up three consecutive wins for the first time this season.
And for Sanderson, keeping a consistent mindset will prove key ahead of what is sure to be another testing fixture.
"We'll be in Monday and then our focus is on Tuesday,” added the defender.
"Nothing will change, the boys' mindset won't change, we still need to get the three points and a clean sheet and hopefully we can do that again on Tuesday.”