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Sunderland press conference - Jack Ross: “There has to be a consistency about your work”

The manager sat down with the media today to preview Saturday’s match against Bolton Wanderers, though he was tight-lipped when it came to takeover news.

Accrington Stanley v Sunderland - Sky Bet League One Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

Ross on heightened expectations this season compared to last:

I don’t feel it is, I just feel it’s always been there. I feel any manager at any club should feel an expectation to win every game... It’s a remiss to think managers at other clubs feel less pressure to win matches. You do your job to ultimately be successful, do all the hard work in term of preparation to go into a match day and win it. People point to greater pressure here, but its same the pressure I felt elsewhere, as I pride myself on winning games

On social media negativity:

Good opportunity to clarify, when I was addressing any negativity that was simply addressing the journalist which asked me the question. There was a wild interpretation of what I meant by that, which can often happen as we live in a world where fake news is pretty common. That was aimed at the question which was asked as opposed to any wider criticism. We have to be careful we don’t blow something out of proportion.

We speak a lot as a group about our focus, our ambition and what we want to do….. we speak a lot in house.

Sunderland v Rotherham United - EFL League 1 Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

On imminent takeover:

“Yes. (My) relationship with Stewart means communication, I’ve had regular dialogue with those who will possibly will take ownership, but until concluded I don’t have too much to say about it”

On January transfers following a takeover:

“For me, I haven’t thought about it. Lots of games in short period of time, and in the next month, focus there, winning the next game… That’s not to say we’re not looking at the bigger picture but certainly no qualms or complaints over what we have”

On changing training plans:

“I do think, in the main, the group have looked more comfortable than last season. When you look at the number of big saves Jon has had to make. We believe in what we do, we keep working at it. Has to be a consistently and adaption of what we do. I don’t think we are giving up a huge amount of opportunities, like Tuesday night against a good team. Jon had one save, other than that, didn’t have a huge amount to do.”

Sunderland Pre-Season Training Photo by Ian Horrocks/Sunderland AFC via Getty Images

On keeping clean sheets:

“Disappoints me, I mean that collectively from my own point of view. It’s my responsibility, its very obvious to see the difference it (clean sheets) makes in games. It does seem we’re getting punished from not conceding very much – it goes to show, it’s very far from an exact science that we work in. We’ve just got to keep working hard and maintain the belief.

On Marc McNulty:

“He’ll still get better, still catching up a little bit with fitness. He missed pre-season and had a hamstring a few weeks ago. Temperament and ability make him a good fit here. I’ve known him for a long time, since he was a youngster. He’s a good fit for the football club. Got his reward on Tuesday and his overall performances have been good, but he will continue to get better”

Sunderland v Rotherham United - EFL League 1 Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

On Bolton’s new manager:

“First of all, you’re excited by a new challenge and I’m sure Keith will be, having had a little spell out the game. The appetite to work, create a team is appealing to him. In the first instance, building a good team and beyond that what will be will be? Keith speaks incredibly positively. Short-term target will be to be good side on the pitch”

On the SAFC takeover and what’s gone on at Bolton:

“I think It’s tough, there’s big expectations on managers and owners to chase dreams and chase success in a very quick way. In fullness of time people might take a step back and look at what happened here in the last 15-16 months and understand how important that’s been. Decisions are made and people need to understand the importance of stabilising the club, (unlike what happened to Bury / Bolton) I can’t speak for whoever may take charge of the club but conversations to date suggest there will be a sustainable approach to grow the club in the right way”.