Martin Bain won’t rush ‘crucial’ Sunderland manager appointment

Nathan Jones. Pic: Gareth Williams
Nathan Jones. Pic: Gareth Williams

Sunderland won’t rush into appointing a new manager following the sacking of Simon Grayson.

Grayson was given his marching orders within minutes of last Tuesday’s draw with Bolton Wanderers, with joint caretakers Robbie Stockdale and Billy McKinlay taking temporary charge.

Chief executive Martin Bain is leading the search for a new manager and the club is understood to favour an experienced boss – but Luton Town manager Nathan Jones is the latest name linked with the job.

Highly-rated Jones, 44, is enjoying a successful season at League Two Luton with the Hatters third, just two points off top spot.

There has been interest in ambitious Jones from other clubs over the past 12 months, which led Luton to tie him down to a long-term deal.

Jones worked as first team coach and assistant manager at Brighton under Chris Hughton before landing the Luton job in January 2016 and took tjem to the play-offs last season.

Sunderland, without a game this weekend due to the international break, are bottom of the Championship after 16 games and are not in action again until they face Millwall at the Stadium of Light a week Saturday.

The Black Cats are searching for their ninth manager in six years and Ally McCoist is a leading contender, while former Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka has been high in the odds and it is understood he would listen to what Sunderland had to say if approached.

Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom and Shrewsbury boss Paul Hurst have also been linked along with South Shields-born Phil Brown, who declared it would be a dream to land the SAFC job.

Stockdale and McKinlay took charge of Sunderland for the Tees-Wear derby defeat and will continue to lead training at the Academy of Light until an appointment is made.

And Cats chief Bain is determined to take his time over the decision, with the appointment one of the most crucial in the club’s recent history.