Sam Allardyce explains why he sold Costel Pantilimon

Allardyce deflated

Big Sam cites 'mistakes' as the reason why the big Romanian was shipped out in January.

Quoted by The Sunderland Echo, boss Sam Allardyce has admitted that he sold goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon because he simply made too many mistakes.

The 29-year-old was initially Allardyce's number one upon replacing Dick Advocaat at the Stadium of Light in October, but the shot-stopper ultimately dropped to the bench in favour of Vito Mannone.

He had only spent three games as Mannone's back-up before being sold to Watford in January, and the ex-West Ham United manager was honest in his assessment that Pantilimon was too erratic between the sticks to be relied on.

The Italian keeper has made 14 starts since displacing his Romanian counterpart, and Allardyce stresses that he is also a better option than local lad Jordan Pickford at the moment.

“He hasn’t made a mistake at all,” said Allardyce via The Sunderland Echo, in reference to Mannone's stint in nets. “The fans want Pickford because he’s a Sunderland lad. I’m not stupid!

“Who would not want Pickford, who’s a Sunderland fan and been at Sunderland since he was eight? But Vito has done nothing wrong at all to lose his position.

“He’s not made any sort of mistakes like Pantilimon did. I know the player has left and I shouldn’t really talk badly about him. But the reason I brought Jordan back and got rid of Pantilimon was I thought he made too many mistakes while I was here. I don’t think Vito has done that at all.”

 

Mannone kept a clean sheet on Saturday as the Black Cats smashed Norwich City 3-0 at Carrow Road to breathe new life into their Premier League relegation battle.

 

Allardyce's side, in 18th, remain a point behind the Canaries, but they also have a game in hand to mean that survival is in their own hands.

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