James Fowler has this passionate defence of Jack Ross after Sunderland fans voice their frustrations
James Fowler has launched a passionate defence of Sunderland manager Jack Ross – and insists he is the man to get the Black Cats promoted.
Fowler, who was speaking to the press ahead of the Carabao Cup tie with Sheffield United, was keen to urge unity after a testing week which saw the Black Cats pick up just two points from a potential six.
And after a section of fans directed chants towards Ross during the draw at Bolton Wanderers, Fowler has called on supporters to stick together – but conceded that they are perfectly entitled to direct criticism at the management team.
“I think that’s part and parcel of football,” he admitted.
“We know we’re at a massive club and there's expectations every week to win games.
“Fans are obviously entitled to voice their opinion, but I think it’s important as players and staff that we stick together.
“Hopefully the fans come along with that as well and whatever we do, will be a collective effort this season.
“I see how hard the manager works every day,” he continued.
“I see the change in the club behind the scenes, even from the first day he walked in the door.
“I think some will easily forget the state the club was in 16, 17 months ago since we came in.”
Despite a mixed start to the campaign, Fowler believes there is no need to panic and remains confident that Ross is the man to deliver promotion.
And he urged fans to remain patient as he and Ross look to engineer a profound change in culture.
“I don’t think that’s even in doubt,” he replied, when asked if the Sunderland boss would be able to achieve promotion this term.
“It takes time and there is no quick fix.
“If you look at other big clubs who have been relegated down the leagues, very few will jump back up and very few will probably have had to deal with the situations this club has found itself in, with the money spent and the players who have come in.
“It takes time to change that culture and the manager is doing that, but it takes time.”