Sunderland hot-seat: The main contenders

TEAMtalk takes a look at the main managerial contenders to replace Martin O'Neill, who was sacked by Sunderland late on Saturday night.

Last Updated: 30/03/13 at 23:02 Post Comment

Roberto Di Matteo: In the hat for Sunderland job

Roberto Di Matteo: In the hat for Sunderland job

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ROBERTO DI MATTEO

Di Matteo has been out of work since leaving Chelsea in November, just six months after guiding them to Champions League success. He has not managed in a relegation fight, though, having being dispensed with by West Brom in 2011 when they looked like getting sucked into trouble. Whether he would be prepared to go from the Champions League to battling relegation to the Championship is also open to question.

MARK HUGHES

The former striker's reputation has been damaged by his unsuccessful 10-month stint in charge of QPR, overseeing their worst start to a Premier League season. He kept Rangers up last season, though, as well as excelling at Blackburn and impressing at Fulham.

STEVE McCLAREN

McClaren, whose reputation in England took a knock with his disastrous time in charge of the national team, is available again after leaving FC Twente in Holland last month. He has not managed in the Premier League since 2006, but did well in his time at other club in the North-East - Middlesbrough.

OWEN COYLE

The 46-year-old was regarded as one of the brightest up-and-coming British managers when he took Burnley into the Premier League and then started well at Bolton. Things did not work out at Wanderers, though, and he left the club following a poor start to this season. A new challenge could reignite his career.

PAOLO DI CANIO

The controversial Italian proved his potential in management at Swindon, winning the League Two title and leaving them well placed in League One before resigning in February after growing tired at the boardroom goings-on at the County Ground. He is on the lookout for a new job, but the Black Cats would be taking a risk by putting their Premier League survival in the hands of a boss with no experience in the top two divisions.

That's who we think are in the hat for the job - who do you think might take the Sunderland reins?

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till reckon Chelsea will go for Khedira as back up for Matic. I think it will turn out to be quite a Mourihno-y window: We'll see the squad players and youth in action pre-season, say things like well, we need not buy anybody and then the club will bid £60m for Pogba and send everybody on loan.

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would love to be a fly on the wall at the meeting between Milner and Rodgers. I don't know if flies can count, but if they can then I would be counting the number of times Rodgers used the word outstanding in his attempts to get Milner to sign.

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ell, it wouldn't be a summer without Arsenal fans fretting over losing a key player, and United throwing their weight around and muscling in on transfer deals which are (apparently) near to completion. If we can't be entertained by the football on the pitch, let's enjoy the silly off-pitch soap opera of the transfer season. Hurrah!

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