Published: Sat, November 18, 2017
Sports | By Grace Becker

New Sunderland boss: Paul Heckingbottom could join Black Cats from Barnsley

New Sunderland boss: Paul Heckingbottom could join Black Cats from Barnsley

Chris Coleman has been installed as the new favourite to take up the reins at Sunderland after the Wales boss odds were slashed on Thursday morning.

The 47-year-old had been Wales boss for nearly six years and last summer guided his country to the semi-finals of Euro 2016.

FA Wales chief executive Jonathan Ford said: "We are extremely disappointed to see Chris' tenure come to an end".

Coleman has held the post of Wales manager since January 2012, taking over following the death of Gary Speed.

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Coleman's decision to leave worldwide football will come as a massive disappointment to the Wales players, who made their feelings known as to how desperate they were for him to continue in the job after his spectacular success.

"I know how much they thought of the manager - he was more than just a manager".

Appointed as the late Gary Speed's successor in January 2012, Coleman will go down as the most successful manager in his country's history after leading Wales to the European Championship semi-finals a year ago.

"We wish Chris the very best of luck for the future as he returns to club management, a desire for which he has always been honest and open about".

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The FAW have also confirmed Coleman's assistant Kit Symons' resignation.

The move comes after Wales failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation, a huge disappointed after reaching the semi-finals of Euro 2016.

The Rangers legend is one of a number of names who have been linked with the job at the Stadium of Light, with the Black Cats being without a permanent boss since sacking Simon Grayson at the end of October.

Heckingbottom was a trainee at Sunderland, but it emerged on Friday that he was not in consideration.

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The 47-year-old will return to club management having previously coached Fulham and Coventry City. He also had short spells overseas with Spanish club Real Sociedad and Greek side AEL.

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