Adam Johnson feels that Sunderland are moving forward under the guidance of chairman Ellis Short and manager Martin O'Neill.
The winger, who joined the Black Cats from Premier League champions Manchester City in August after struggling to maintain a place in the first-team squad at, has made just three league appearances this season due to a thigh problem.
However, the 25-year-old has insisted that he is thrilled with life at his hometown club, and believes Sunderland are evolving as a Premier League club, albeit at a different pace to that of City.
He told The Shields Gazette: “With City, everyone knew where they were going, it’s not that drastic a change at Sunderland. The club is progressing, but a bit slower.
"City went out and bought Robinho [for £32.5m on deadline day 2008] and people like that, and straight away it was pretty clear what they were going to be about.
"Here at Sunderland this is a club progressing quickly, the players are coming in and gelling as a team, but it does not feel like when I was at City.
"It was all change at City when I signed there, and things have moved fast for them. Very fast. It has paid off for them too because they won the Premier League in May."