Big Sam looks like he might have nailed down the biggest job in English football.
Sunderland have released a statement this morning saying that they have been approached by the FA for permission to speak to Sam Allardyce about the vacant England manager job. Eddie Howe is rumoured to be the only real alternative to the FA at the moment, who are understood to want to appoint an Englishman to the role. And, almost as if by process of elimination, this leaves Allardyce as the only real candidate.
Club comment - Sam Allardyce https://t.co/Scrp0HBogI
— Sunderland AFC (@SunderlandAFC) July 13, 2016
A statement posted on Sunderland's official website said:
The Football Association contacted Sunderland AFC to seek permission to speak with our manager as part of what was supposed to be a confidential discussion process with potential candidates for the position of England manager.
At Sam Allardyce’s request, we agreed to this.
Sam is very much key to our plans. After what was an extremely challenging season, we are keen to see a period of stability, both on and off the field, and we want him to remain as manager of our football club.
The ongoing speculation over Sam’s position is extremely damaging to Sunderland AFC, particularly at this crucial time of the season and we urge the FA to respect the disruption that this process is causing and bring about a swift resolution to the matter.
It's highly likely that Big Sam isn't the Big Name that most England fans will have wanted after the likes of Arsene Wenger, Jurgen Klinsmann, Guus Hiddink and Marcelo Bielsa were linked with the gig but, as with everything else, he'll be judged by the results on the pitch.
Picture credit: Brian Lawless / SPORTSFILE