Sunderland appoint Lee Johnson as Phil Parkinson’s replacement

Sunderland have appointed former Bristol City manager Lee Johnson as their next head coach.

The 39-year-old has signed a two-and-a-half year deal to replace the sacked Phil Parkinson and will take charge of his first match on Saturday when Wigan visit the Stadium of Light in Sky Bet League One.

Johnson told the official club website: “Speaking to Kristjaan (Speakman), Jim (Rodwell) and the owners, I was absolutely blown away by their plans and dreams for the club. I can see so much potential.

“I want to be successful and to see a brave new Sunderland. I want to be bold in my own decisions, I want to be bold for the team in the way that we play and the philosophy that we play to, but I also want the club to make bold decisions and that is what I’ve truly bought into.

“We have to connect the team and the fan base because that can be really powerful at a club like this.”

Sporting Director Speakman added: “I felt Lee was the outstanding candidate. I believe he understands the complexities of the project and I’m looking forward to supporting him in his role to bring sustained success to the football club.”