Poyet: I'm the man to lift Sunderland out of mire
GUS POYET has made it clear to Sunderland owner Ellis Short that he is keen to take on the challenge of rejuvenating the team after Paolo Di Canio's ill-fated reign.
Poyet has told Short that he has no qualms about moving to the north east following his departure from Brighton and Hove Albion during the summer and that he can fix the damage done to morale by Di Canio by gelling 14 new signings into a team good enough to pull clear of relegation danger.
Talks are understood to have taken place with the Uruguayan, although Short has previously indicated that he wants to take his time making a decision as he had been stung by how spectacularly his gamble on Di Canio backfired – the Italian was in charge for just 13 games.
This will be Short's third managerial appointment since he became Sunderland's owner in 2010 and the American is expected to speak to other interested parties in the next 48 hours.
Although there has been a suggestion the job is Poyet's to turn down following the early show of interest, Sunderland's official line last night was that this is "premature" and they'll continue to look at other candidates.
Steve McClaren and Tony Pulis are two British managers who would like to be given the chance to share their ideas, but Watford manager Gianfranco Zola and early favourite Robert Di Matteo appear to be out of the running.
Meanwhile, Sunderland began the post-Di Canio era with a morale-boosting 2-0 over Peterborough at the Stadium of Light last night to book their place in the last 16 of the League Cup.
Emanuele Giaccherini's 32nd-minute strike and a second-half header from substitute Valentin Roberge secured the victory.
Interim boss Kevin Ball made something of a statement by naming only three of Di Canio's summer signings – Giaccherini, Ki Sung-yueng and Jozy Altidore – in his starting line-up and restoring former skipper Lee Cattermole to the team. (© Daily Teegraph, London)