Chris Coleman was announced as the new Sunderland manager earlier this week. Picture credit:

Firstly – just for clarity – my mother hails from Sunderland but father is a Cardiff boy. So, my allegiances are split. Sunderland are, and always have been, my club team but I follow in my father’s footsteps and consider myself a proud Welshman.

Naturally I have mixed emotions following Coleman’s appointment – I’m sad to see him depart from a Welsh perspective yet thrilled he’s chosen Sunderland.

I believe Coleman will bring something sorely lacking at Sunderland – team spirit.

The way in which Sunderland’s new gaffer managed to foster such an intense togetherness in the Wales camp following the death of former national team manager Gary Speed was nothing short of incredible.

The Welsh mood was on the floor following Speed’s suicide, and Coleman walked into a dressing room fraught with a complex minefield of grief and emotion, yet managed to unite the players.

He showed exceptional character in choosing to replace Aaron Ramsey with Ashley Williams as captain.

Coleman’s rationale was that Wales needed Ramsey the player more than Ramsey the captain. The decision worked due to good communication and explanation. The players – Ramsey included – accepted the decision and responded brilliantly.

The 47-year-old now faces the task of uniting a dressing room with problems at Sunderland – albeit deferent problems to his time at Wales – but his experience at Wales and aforementioned strength of character should stand him in good stead.

The Welsh players loved him and enjoyed his way of working. He developed a culture of commitment and professionalism alongside a will to win.

Just look at the outpouring of emotion since he departed his position with Wales.

Tactically, Coleman managed to find a way of playing that consistently produced results with limited resources. Yes, he had Gareth Bale and Ramsey, but take into consideration the disparity in talent available for selection … Wales advanced to the Euro 2016 semi-finals with Sam Vokes, Hal Robson-Kanu, Simon Church and Jazz Richards in the squad.

Simply put, he managed his resources well and found a way to win – something recent Sunderland managers, barring Sam Allardyce, have consistently failed to do.

Wales could play attractive and exciting football, as was displayed with the 3-1 victory over Belgium. But the Welsh under Coleman could also win ugly if need be.

After all, Welsh managerial legends failed where Coleman succeeded. Neither Mike England, Terry Yorath, Mark Hughes nor John Toshack took Wales to a tournament finals.

Coleman’s achievements under the circumstances were magnificent, and I believe we’re lucky to have him at Sunderland – especially given that he reportedly received offers from Premier League clubs in the summer.

He’ll forever be cemented in Welsh football folklore as the manager who finally ended the six decades of qualifying hurt.

But can he end Sunderland’s woes? I believe so.