Yep, more revelations here on WAW - who'd have thought it? The new Sunderland manager has not been determined, but a clear shortlist has been drawn with an even clearer view of what is required.
Chris Coleman’s sacking didn’t sit well with all Sunderland fans. It seemed a little harsh, given the Welshman had a difficult – but not impossible – task of keeping Sunderland in the Championship. But it wasn’t Coleman’s contribution to Sunderland’s relegation that convinced the new regime he isn’t the man to lead us forward.
Simply put – we have to accept that we’re a League One club. WAW understands that all of the candidates currently on the four-five man shortlist are no strangers to lower league football, or to pulling awful football sides out of the mire. It is believed that Sunderland would represent each manager’s biggest job to date.
According to our sources, the new Sunderland manager will be “a proven but progressive manager, capable of changing the psychological culture at the club.” So basically nothing like we’ve ever seen before at Sunderland. A squeaky clean history is also essential for the man who is going to take the reigns.
For all Coleman is your archetypal nice-guy, he was considered a risk to the new strategy with no experience in a failing football club. The Welshman clearly failed to deal with players who consistently took the mick out of the club, the same players who won’t be here next season.
Chris Wilder is one man heavily linked with the post. That makes sense - he fits the bill entirely. Every side the 50 year old has touched since moving into manager in 2001 has been better for it, with Wilder yet to be sacked as a manager. He dragged a flailing Oxford United side back into the Football League, saved Northampton and subsequently took them into League One and bossed that division with a dominant Sheffield United.
Someone like Wilder would be ideal for a Sunderland side in desperate need for rescuing and reinventing. You certainly wouldn’t have players on £70k a week spending match days on the Metro Centre nudgeys with him charge. Whether he features on then‘list’ remains to be confirmed.
Another manager who may be considered is Leicester’s assistant Michael Appleton. Although his experience is more limited, the former Oxford United boss has a reputation for moulding younger players – something which our new owner is very keen on as revealed in our piece yesterday.
Appleton also received plaudits for his style of football with the U’s, building on Wilder’s earlier success by taking them into League One where they remain to this day. He also found success in the EFL Trophy, only to be a beaten finalist two years running.
There are other names on Sunderland’s wish list, and that's not me saying Wilder and/or Appleton are on it. Whilst we don’t know which names are on it – we can clarify that, at this time, no decision has been made on Sunderland’s new manager.