Neither could quite contain their excitement as they sat down to give their first interviews since their appointments as non-executive directors at Sunderland AFC.

David Jones, a Sky Sports presenter who grew up in North Yorkshire but made many a childhood trip to Wearside to watch Sunderland at Roker Park as his father was friends with then manager Alan Durban, spoke of his immense pride.

Tom Sloanes, a Sunderland-born businessman with a background in bookmaking, could barely get his words out to express his excitement. His voice cracked and almost broke as he displayed his delight, while also emotionally considering how proud his parents would have been had they still been here.

Both absolutely love this club, that much is clear. Both jumped at the opportunity, when asked by chairman Stewart Donald, to join the board of the club.

They arrive with the club struggling in League One. There is trouble both on and off the pitch, and after Charlie Methven and Tony Davison stepped away from their roles at directors for personal reasons - Methven with a child soon due, and Davison to be closer to his family down south - Donald has found two of the most qualified people he could have, who both have the credentials and the love and passion to sit on the Black Cats board.

Jones was honest in his club interview. This isn't a direct replacement, because he cannot do it on a full-time basis. His phone, he said however, is always on. He is desperate to help turn the club's ailing fortunes.

"There's probably a lot of fans like me who've felt a growing apathy as the club's fallen down the leagues, and we need to arrest that slide," the Sky Sports presenter said.

"We need to give the next generation of fans a team to be proud of again and get this football club, and get this city, smiling again.

"I don't think I could have said yes to another club at this stage in my life. I have a job at Sky Sports which is very fulfilling and which I'm very passionate about. It excites me on a day-to-day basis and to find room in my life right now for something else was always going to be hard.

"But when it is your own club reaching out to you for help, then you have to be prepared to make sacrifices."

So what do the pair believe they can bring to their new roles that will help the club?

For Sloanes, he believes his willingness to say it how it is, while having the love he does for the club, can be a help at boardroom level - a representative voice of the supporters, if you will.

He said: "In my business life all I've ever done is surround myself with good positive people who can make a difference.

"You need to be able to say what needs to be said, and anyone who has worked with me in the past will tell you I'm not shy in coming forward with my opinion, and that's not going to change.

"But it's about having a positive impact. I don't know the full remit of what's required, but I do know there's an awful lot to do.

"If you've got good people around you, helping to make those decisions, to make the right ones, they all lead to positive end results.

"I'll clean the toilets if I think that that's the problem; if that's what needs to be done.

"Like anything, we just need some positivity. I know the fans are frustrated at the moment, I'm one of them. But if we can bring everyone together as a team then that can be a really strong thing here."

Jones, meanwhile, having held a similar role at Oxford United recently, is hopeful he can use his knowledge of the game to help the club - but he isn't looking beyond the next six months at most.

"My ambitions don't go much further than the next month or two right now, possibly six months," he said.

"I can't see that far ahead [to think of a return to the Premier League]. I'm under no illusions the club has called me because they need some help and I think I can help in certain ways. I wouldn't be here if this club was about to fly off the charts.

"If I can help to bring a bit of stability to the club, who knows what might happen in the long term, but right now I can't look too far beyond the next couple of months.

"We have to knit the board together and get everyone working on the same page, and I think that will ripple down throughout the whole club."I just hope I can have an impact."

Both mentioned togetherness. Be that the people on the board of directors, all the way down to the players on the pitch and then the fans too, those not employed by the club, but attached to it and vitally important to it all the same.

That togetherness on the board is particularly key for both Jones and Sloanes if they are to have the positive impact the hope to.

Neither are full-time directors, neither are putting their money into the club like Donald or Sartori, for example.

But their arrival at the club, and their passion for it, can only be a good thing, providing Donald and co. are receptive.

Their appointments during the week were met by scepticism from some supporters. 'Nothing more than a PR stunt', was the common view.

But Jones has expressed his confidence that Donald has made this call because he wants to be challenged and because he wants that alternative voice. If that is the case, then those good intentions of the two new men on Sunderland's board might, just might, help Sunderland bring the feel-good factor back.