Kyril Louis-Dreyfus gives strong backing to Lee Johnson as he stresses commitment to 'long-term' Sunderland project
Kyril Louis-Dreyfus has signalled his clear backing to Sunderland head coach Lee Johnson.
Reports this week had suggested that the Black Cats boss could leave as a result of the club’s play-off disappointment, but Louis-Dreyfus is determined to stick to the vision he set out upon taking over the club, where he stressed the importance of not panicking in the face of short-term setbacks.
In an interview with talkSPORT, he said that Johnson was the ‘right man’ to lead the club’s promotion push next season.
“Lee Johnson was a long-term appointment from the start,” Louis-Dreyfus said.“We all knew that regardless of the outcome of this season, he will be with us for next season.
“He is the right man to lead us to promotion hopefully in this forthcoming season.”
Louis-Dreyfus was also asked about his plans for the summer ahead, and whether he was prepared to spend big as the club looks to return to the top tiers.
The Chairman said he would invest in the long term but stressed the importance of seeing the club through the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We announced our squad list yesterday which included a few departures who need to be replaced,” Louis-Dreyfus said.
“Over the last few months we recruited a lot of people from across the industry, including the likes of Stuart Harvey and Kristjaan Speakman. I trust that we have a good team in place to look for the best possible replacements.
“It’s going to be a long-term project,” he added.
“I don’t think a quick fix is possible in our situation.
“We need to implement a long-term plan to rebuild every area of the club to hopefully then get success out of it.
“As you know I’m not the sole member of the ownership group.
“However, I would say that as an ownership group everyone is committed to supporting the club.
“First and foremost, we need to support it to cover the significant losses that every club is having due to the pandemic.
“We’ll need to cover those losses as long as there is uncertainty over the pandemic.
“First and foremost it’s our responsibility to sustain the club through this difficult project and hopefully when this period ends, we’ll be able to invest in some long-term assets.”