Date: 4th December 2008 at 12:07pm
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It`s been a lean time for Sam Allardyce since he left Bolton. He was destined to fail at Newcastle, as is everybody, and Paul Ince was preferred when Blackburn were looking for a manager. They may be reappraising that decision at the moment.

However, with Roy Keane finally overturning his pram at Sunderland, the big man is bound to be installed as favourite to take over there. Allardyce played for the Wearsiders after he`d left Bolton the first time and he was sought after by them before Keane was appointed.

The job will appeal to Allardyce. Sunderland have money to spend and mixed in with the dross there are some good players there. It is unlikely that El Hadji Diouf will continue to be so unproductive if Big Sam takes charge.

Then there`s the defence. Sunderland haven`t got one. Allardyce`s success at Bolton was based firmly on having a reliable back line. Chairman Niall Quinn is unlikely to waver over the decision. He wanted Allardyce last time and now he`s available. A caretaker appointment will probably be made for the game at Manchester United, but the odds on the former Bolton boss being in charge in time for the game against West Brom will be short.

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