Zenden backs new Sunderland manager Advocaat for success, identifies his strengths

Ex-Sunderland midfielder Boudewijn Zenden believes his former club have made a great appointment in Dick Advocaat.

Boudewijn Zenden has spoken to Dutch website Voetbal International after his former club Sunderland appointed compatriot Dick Advocaat as their new boss.

The Black Cats sacked manager Gus Poyet on Monday after a humiliating 4-0 defeat to Aston Villa on Saturday afternoon, and with just nine games left to play, Sunderland needed to make a swift appointment - and that's just what they did today.

Former Rangers manager Advocaat has returned to British football at the age of 67, and will now be charged with the task of keeping Sunderland in the Premier League having been appointed earlier today.

He inherits a side who sit just one point above the relegation zone having won just four games all season and failed to win in their last six games.

Advocaat arrives with a wealth of experience in both club and international football, and one of his former Netherlands players has praised his ability.

Former winger Zenden not only played for Advocaat at international level, but also played for Sunderland - and told Voetbal international that he is convinced Advocaat will be a success on Wearside, as well as outlining some of his best attributes.

"I have no doubt about it (that Advocaat will be successful)" said Zenden. "And if Sunderland don’t go down then there will be opportunity for more (a longer contract)."

"Advocaat’s someone who wants to fight for results and he can convince players to give everything. He is also someone who will listen to the players. He is not heavy-handed, but he can be tough as well and that is something they need. He has managed abroad too after building his reputation with Rangers," he added.

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