Daniel Stendel left Championship strugglers Barnsley just hours before Jack Ross was sacked by League One outfit Sunderland.

Sunderland owner Stewart Donald has admitted that he’s ‘sure’ Daniel Stendel will be in the frame to replace Jack Ross at the Stadium of Light, speaking to BBC Newcastle’s Total Sport show (8 October).

Donald bit the bullet and pulled the trigger on Tuesday afternoon, sacking the under-fire Ross just days after that 2-0 defeat to Lincoln City. A dreadful performance at Sincil Bank might have been the final straw but the Scot had been under pressure for some time, particularly after Sunderland lost twice at Wembley in the final of the Checkatrade Trophy and the League One play-offs in the last few months.

You would be right to point out that leading Sunderland to the national stadium on two separate occasions is an achievement in itself but the fact that the Black Cats are stuck in League One for a second successive season highlights the lack of real progress they made under Ross.

Fortunately, a man who sealed automatic promotion from the third tier last season with a Barnsley side who accumulated 91 points and 80 goals has suddenly become available. And, after Stendel walked away from Oakwell, Donald has suggested that the German could be heading north.

“I’m sure Daniel might be someone we look at.”

The fact that Ross was handed his P45 just hours after Stendel’s departure from Barnsley was confirmed certainly doesn’t feel like a coincidence. Did Donald make the decision there and then before the perfect replacement had just become available?

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