Less than 24 hours after losing manager Sam Allardyce, Sunderland have replaced him with former Manchester United and Everton boss David Moyes.
The Premier League side had begun talking to Moyes as soon as it was became evident that Allardyce was the FA’s first choice for the England job, and as such it was a simple process of finalising his acquisition once the position became vacant yesterday afternoon.
He was odds-on favourite for the role since the beginning, and it seemed only a matter of when, rather thatn if, the 53-year-old would be appearing in the Stadium of Light dugout.
Speaking to the club’s website about the appointment, Sunderland chairman Ellis Short revealed that not only was Moyes the club’s first choice for the role on this occasion, but that they have made multiple attempts to sign him in the past:
“He was my number one managerial target for the last five appointments, but his desire to honour existing contracts meant we were not able to bring him to Sunderland previously.
“To be able to finally welcome him as our manager is fantastic news for the club.
“The fact that David has committed to a four-year deal is a clear demonstration of his belief in what he can achieve here.”
Moyes himself was also delighted to be contacted, and in accepting the job it brings an end his two-year absence from the English game:
“I am delighted to have joined Sunderland. I am relishing the challenge and excited by the opportunity.
“I have taken over a big British club with a great support and I’m looking forward to working in the Premier League again.
“I look forward to continuing the good work done by Sam.”
190 – Only three PL managers (Ferguson, Wenger, Redknapp) have won more PL games than David Moyes (190). Seasoned. pic.twitter.com/Ggu39sOvni
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 23, 2016
Moyes returns to football having been sacked at Real Socieded last November, a similar fate to that which he suffered during an ill-fated nine-month spell as Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor at Manchester United in 2013/14.
His earlier managerial career was slightly more successful. He spent eleven years at Everton, guiding them to a top four finish – and Champions League football – in 2005.
He becomes Sunderland’s seventh manager in five years, but the only one not to be appointed in mid-season since Steve Bruce in 2009.