Nigel Pearson unveils his plans for Sunderland as he eyes managerial return
And the report suggests that Pearson has unveiled a plan to bring Kevin Phillips back to the Stadium of Light as his number two should he get the role.
Pearson is supposedly one of the candidates being considered by the Black Cats as they seek a manager with League One experience - the 56-year-old having won the third tier with Leicester over a decade ago.
He has been out of work since OH Leuven in February, but has previously led the Foxes to the Premier League while also overseeing Derby County and Hull City in the Championship.
Stewart Donald is still speaking to a number of candidates, with Phil Parkinson, Paul Cook and Gareth Ainsworth also thought to be in the frame.