Allardyce stakes claim for Sunderland job

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The Independent Football

Sam Allardyce has made a pitch to be Roy Keane's successor at Sunderland by claiming that he "knows what the place needs".

Allardyce said that his time at the club as a player and as a coach under Peter Reid has given him an insight into the club. The former Bolton Wanderers manager is the bookies' favourite to get the job, despite his unsuccessful spell at Sunderland's north-east rivals Newcastle United.

"I've said over the last few days that I would like to get back into managing a football club and I'm bound to be linked with Sunderland at the moment," he said. "There's been no official contact but I know what a great club it is. I've worked there twice before; once as a player and once as a coach with Peter Reid, so I know what it needs. But we'll just have to wait and see."

Allardyce insists that his break from management has done him good and he is ready to return. "There's been one or two positions I've talked about but I haven't felt it was right for me to go at that particular time or for whatever reason," he said.

"I really feel I'm ready now. Having done almost 16 years on the trot in management, I needed a break and the break had to be long enough for me to come back with all guns blazing."