LEE JOHNSON is delighted his long-term vision for Sunderland is “aligned” to that of Kyril Louis-Dreyfus – and feels everyone at the club has benefited from the new owner’s presence in the last couple of weeks.

Louis-Dreyfus’ appointment as Sunderland’s new chairman and majority owner was confirmed last Thursday, and the 23-year-old conducted his first interview with the club’s official website this week in which he spoke of the need to “rebuild the club from its foundations” and “not waver from the long-term plan” if the Black Cats fall short and miss out on promotion this year.

That long-term plan encompasses Johnson’s role as head coach, as well as Kristjaan Speakman’s recent arrival as sporting director and the appointment of Steve Davison as Chief Operating Officer, which was confirmed this week.

Further senior appointments are expected in the next couple of months, with an ongoing overhaul of the academy a key priority, and Johnson is happy to be singing from the same hymn sheet as Louis-Dreyfus when it comes to the importance of creating a new off-field structure that can carry Sunderland forward.

“He’s a very impressive man,” said the Black Cats boss. “He’s been good to work with, and he’s got a lovely way about him. He definitely cares, he’s definitely passionate, and he’s been present here at the club as well, which I think is important. All the staff and players have been able to get a feel for the type of person he is.

“As a head coach of a team, you become a disciple of that message and try to manage it as much as possible. The good thing is that we’re very aligned – and we have been from the start. Hopefully, like he says, that long-term gain will come as long as we’re making the correct decisions, both on and off the pitch.”

While Louis-Dreyfus is only 23, Johnson has been impressed with the depth of his footballing and business knowledge, with his family’s involvement with Marseille and Club Bruges clearly having played an important role in his development.

“When you’re a head coach and you’ve got an owner or a chairman, they’re almost always very successful people in their own right,” said Johnson. “I think Kyril’s the same. He’s a successful individual, and he obviously has a history of family success as well.

“You can tell the values that have been passed down through that family, and the education he’s had, both in football and outside of football. Business wise, he’s got a strong acumen.

“Of course, he’s going to make mistakes, like we all are. Even at 73, owners are still making mistakes, so we’ve got to be there to support him as much as we expect him to support us.”

Sunderland return to action at Crewe this weekend, and Josh Scowen should be available at Gresty Road. Ross Stewart, Tom Flanagan and Bailey Wright will miss out.