Titus Bramble has called for Sunderland fans and players to back Steve Bruce, despite the north east club coming off a disappointing start to the season.
The Black Cats have added 12 new faces to the side over the summer, but after scoring one goal from four matches and collecting just two points, the new members of the squad are clearly having difficulty settling into the Stadium of Light.
But Bramble insists that the slow start has nothing to do with Bruce’s tactics, with the side aiming to turn their season around this weekend against Stoke and start clocking up more points on the table.
“Any time they call for the manager’s head, it’s unfair. The manager has made some great signings. He’s improved things from last season, but it’s going to take time to gel. It’s not going to happen overnight,” he said.
“The players are all behind the gaffer.
“We’ve got six or seven new faces in the team from last season, and even more in the squad, so it’s going to take time to know how the manager wants us to play and the style he wants them to produce.”
While it has been a tough start to the season for Sunderland, with the side losing 1-0 to Brighton in the Carling Cup alongside facing tough Barclays Premier League fixtures, Bramble still has faith in their ability.
“I’m still very confident about what we can achieve. We’ve got a group of internationals and a fantastic squad. I don’t see why we can’t improve on where we finished last season," he added.
“One result will change things right back. If we can get back to winning ways against Stoke that will put things right.”
The defender wasn’t sure what Sunderland have been doing wrong to make for such a disappointing start, but believes the tough fixtures have had something to do with it.
He said: “If we could put our fingers on why it was happening we would do something about it straight away.
“We’ve had two tough (home) games to start the season, with the derby game and Chelsea as well.
“It’s not like we’ve played Mickey Mouse opposition. Last season was a totally different kettle of fish.
“The good thing about football is there’s always another game around the corner and Stoke City at home is an ideal chance to put things right.
“We’re hoping the fans will come out in force like they have done so far and get behind us.”