Callum McManaman says the appointment of Chris Coleman will give the Sunderland squad a ‘massive lift’.
Sunderland set a new record for games at home without a win after Saturday’s 2-2 Championship draw with Millwall, but Coleman will take charge for the trip to Aston Villa tomorrow as they look to to get off the bottom of the league.
Coleman is well known to figures in the Sunderland squad, with Adam Matthews and Jonny Williams both regular fixtures in the national squad during Coleman’s six years in charge.
They’ve given a glowing reference to team-mates, with Coleman and assistant Kit Symons leading training for the first time yesterday.
McManaman said: “Adam [Matthews] and Jonny [Williams] know him well and they say he’s a good manager and a good man.
“I’ve watched Wales under Chris Coleman and, yeah, I like the way they play, I’m looking forward to it.
“It’ll give us another big lift.
“We’re looking forward to getting going.
“I’m looking forward to working with him. Hopefully he can get the best out of me and the rest of the lads.”
Despite Sunderland’s dire league position, the winger insists that the new management team will have plenty of positives to build on.
He said: “I don’t think we’re far away – you’ve seen that (on Saturday). I think there have been a few games where we’ve deserved the three points and once we get it things will turn very quickly.
“It is just confidence. If we’d got that win today we’d have been as good as out of the relegation zone with a lot of the season still to play.
“There’s something for the new manager to build on from today, definitely. Bar a couple of mistakes, we win that game.”
McManaman also had symphathy for Dutch goalkeeper Robbin Ruiter, who made two dreadful errors early in the game, for Millwa;ll’s goals, but responded to make a superb reflex save late on.
He said: “That last save, where he was going the other way, it was a great save.
“He deserves credit for it.
“I think it (mistakes) can happen to any player especially when you’re down the bottom and things aren’t you going your way.”