Chris Coleman, manager of Sunderland, looks on during the Sky Bet Championship match against Aston Villa.
Sunderland won only their second game of the Championship season and first since the second league outing of the 2017/18 campaign with a 2-0 victory at Burton Albion on Saturday (November 25).
It was Chris Coleman's second match in charge since being appointed the new manager following the sacking of Simon Grayson after just 18 games at the helm.
Lewis Grabban of Sunderland scores during the Sky Bet Championship match against Aston Villa.
The first was admittedly a defeat, but a narrow 2-1 defeat at in-form Aston Villa in a performance that showed much improvement from those immediately before that had eventually cost Grayson his job.
In two fixtures Coleman has managed to instil some self belief back in a Black Cats squad that looked completely devoid of any confidence following relegation from the Premier League and then a quick drop to the very bottom of the second tier.
Not to get too carried away, but there are perhaps more than a few passing similarities between what is currently being seen at the Stadium of Light and what was present the last time they were in this division 11 years ago.
Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane watches on during the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier against Austria.
In 2006/07 things had started badly under boss Niall Quinn, who was also chairman, and the North East outfit lost their opening four league fixtures. As a result Roy Keane was brought in for his first managerial role and took the club from second bottom to promotion in an outstanding debut campaign.
It may be a little farfetched to suggest Coleman will get promoted - after all Keane was appointed after five games, not 17, and also had time remaining in the summer transfer window to make new signings - but a march on the top half should be a realistic ambition.
Very different personalities, but two coaches whose success relies heavily on their strength of character, just as the Irishman was over a decade ago perhaps the Welshman is exactly what the Mackems need right now.