Cookies on Premierleague.com

The Premier League website employs cookies to improve your user experience. We have updated our cookie policy to reflect changes in the law on cookies and tracking technologies used on websites. If you continue on this website, you will be providing your consent to our use of cookies. Find out more.

Monday 03 June 2013

On this day: Steve Bruce named as Sunderland manager

Looking back at Premier League history, we recall Sunderland changing managers in 2009

  • Steve Bruce called his appointment to Sunderland as a "perfect step"

  • During his two full seasons at Sunderland Bruce led them to their highest finish in 10 years

Premierleague.com rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.

On this day: 3 June 2009 Steve Bruce becomes Sunderland manager

Steve Bruce left Wigan Athletic to take charge of Sunderland. The former Manchester United captain succeeded Ricky Sbragia, who had stepped down two weeks earlier after narrowly steering Sunderland away from relegation.

"I have worked more than 10 years for a chance like this"
Steve Bruce

Sbragia had taken over when Roy Keane had resigned as manager in December and had enjoyed a good start but Sunderland’s form tailed off and they finished the 2008/09 season in 16th, five places below Bruce’s Wigan.

"It didn't take much persuasion,” Bruce said of his appointment. “This is the perfect step with the size of the football club and structure. I've worked more than 10 years for a chance like this. It's up to me to put a team on the pitch now. I can't wait to start.

"I just want to continue the progression of the club over the last few years. An average [crowd] of 42,500 shows what kind of support we have.”

Bruce’s Sunderland won four of their first seven matches of the 2009/10 season and were in sixth at one time but a run of 14 matches without a win during the middle of the campaign meant they finished 13th.

The next season Bruce guided Sunderland to 10th, their highest finish in 10 years, but a poor start to the 2011/12 campaign led to his exit. Bruce returned to management with Hull City in the Championship a year ago and led the team back to the Barclays Premier League at the first attempt.

Share this page

Key Points

  • Premierleague.com looks back through the annals of history of the competition
  • A memorable event or match from each day of the year will be selected
  • We remember Sunderland naming Steve Bruce as their new manager