Michael Appleton says the new Sunderland boss needs time to build - as he continues to be linked with the job.
The Leicester City assistant manager has seen his odds fall to as short as 7/2 with some bookmakers and continues to be a leading name in the frame.
Having previously worked with Stewart Donald at Oxford United, Appleton would be a logical appointment should Donald and his consortium see their takeover gain EFL approval.
During his time at Oxford, Appleton led the U's to two Checkatrade Trophy Finals and established himself as a promising young coach after leading the club to the brink of the League One play-offs.
And while he admitted that he was flattered to be linked with the 'big job' on offer at the Stadium of Light, Appleton claims that whoever takes the reins will need time to build something.
But that's a luxury that hasn't been afforded to Sunderland managers in recent years, which is something the 42-year-old is all too aware of.
“Every manager would like that backing, but in today’s game it’s very rare you’re given much time," he said in an interview with BBC Radio 5 Live.
“But to build a club and a style and a relationship with fans, you are only going to get that with time. Ultimately at Sunderland for too long that hasn’t been the case.”
Appleton did admit, however, that he was flattered to be linked with such a high-profile job - although he added that his current thoughts remain on Leicester City.
"Look, Sunderland is a big club and it’s always nice to be linked with clubs like that," Appleton admitted.
“Sunderland is certainly a big job and it’s nice to be mentioned as a potential candidate.
“But ultimately, from my point of view, I’ll be focusing everything I do on Leicester City until I’m told otherwise.”