Sunderland sacked manager Simon Grayson last week.
Sunderland’s miserable form saw them draw 3-3 with Bolton Wanderers last week – and that proved to be Simon Grayson’s final game in charge.
The Black Cats‘ shambolic defending and crippling home form was on show again against Bolton, and just five minutes after the final whistle at the Stadium of Light, Sunderland announced the sacking of manager Grayson, just four months after prising him away from Preston North End.
Grayson’s league record for Sunderland ends with one win in 15 games and 30 goals conceded, and whilst his reign barely got started, most fans feel that it was the right decision.
Caretakers Robbie Stockdale and Billy McKinlay oversaw Sunday’s 1-0 defeat at rivals Middlesbrough, and it seems unlikely that the duo will end up in charge on a full-time basis, with a host of managers already linked with the post.
Next stop… pic.twitter.com/VycIBKLeyn— Aitor Karanka (@Karanka) November 8, 2017
Bookmakers have been offering odds on Grayson’s successor as Sunderland chase yet another new manager – and here are some of the main names in the frame tonight with Sky Bet.
Aitor Karanka: 8/13
Former Middlesbrough boss Karanka lost his job in March as Boro battled against relegation from the Premier League, and hasn’t returned to management since. The Spaniard is now set to be one of the most in demand managers having won promotion from the Championship in 2016, and he remains the favourite for Sunderland tonight at 8/13, after posting an ambiguous photo about his next destination on Twitter, with Sunderland fans hoping that he will be heading back to the North East.
Paul Heckingbottom: 9/4
The biggest mover today has been Barnsley boss Paul Heckingbottom, who is now all the way down to 9/4 second favourite. The 40-year-old, who spent four years with Sunderland as a player between 1995 and 1999, has impressed on a budget as Barnsley manager, boasting a win rate of more than 41% across two caretaker spells and his permanent stint. One of the most promising young managers in England right now, Heckingbottom could be a smart appointment – if given time at Sunderland.
Ally McCoist: 7/1
Former Sunderland striker McCoist has recently emerged as a major candidate for the job, especially given his links to Sunderland. McCoist not only used to play for Sunderland, but also worked with Black Cats chief executive Martin Bain at Rangers, with the pair maintaining a strong relationship. Despite that, McCoist has drifted over the last 24 hours, moving from 5/1 to around 7/1 this evening.
John O’Shea: 14/1
Still a surprise contender for the job, Sunderland defender O’Shea sits at 14/1 for the job this evening. The Irishman, 36, is Black Cats vice-captain and has yet to hold any coaching or managerial experience, but he is still a surprise candidate for the Sunderland job. O’Shea may be seen as being too inexperienced to save Sunderland right now, but as a veteran presence in the Sunderland dressing room, he could step up into a coaching role.