London - Premier League strugglers Sunderland have entrusted Gus Poyet with
the responsibility of securing their top-flight survival, announcing on
Tuesday that they have appointed him as manager on a two-year contract.
45-year-old Uruguayan, who previously worked at second-tier Brighton
and Hove Albion, succeeds Paolo Di Canio, whose seven-month tenure left
the northeast club at the foot of the table.
Di Canio was sacked
last month with Kevin Ball placed in caretaker charge and Poyet arrives
to find the club six points adrift of safety with only one point from
their first seven games.
"I look forward to proving my ability to
the fans - I want them to believe, because we need to stick together,"
Poyet told the Sunderland website.
"I think the key behind my strong home record at Brighton was the connection with the fans. I can see that here also.
"It's a huge challenge, but one I am excited about and I am grateful for the opportunity to manage in the Premier League."
Texan owner Ellis Short, who conducted a two-week search for Di Canio's
successor, said he was convinced he had found the right man for the
"We analysed a wide range of candidates and believe that
Gus's track record, experience, commitment and passion make him the
right man to take us forward," he said. "We welcome him to Sunderland."
becomes Sunderland's sixth permanent head coach in less than five years
and he will also be the first Uruguayan to manage a team in the Premier
He first came to England as a player in 1997, joining
Chelsea from Real Zaragoza and winning the FA Cup, the now defunct UEFA
Cup Winners' Cup, and the UEFA Super Cup, before spending three years at
A goalscoring midfielder, he also played for
Uruguay 26 times and was a member of the team that triumphed at the 1995
His managerial experience is limited to his
four-year spell at Brighton but during that time he led the south coast
club to promotion from third-tier League One in 2011 before guiding them
to the Championship play-offs last season.
However, his time at
the Amex Stadium ended on a sour note. He was suspended by the club
following their play-off semi-final defeat by Crystal Palace and was
informed of his dismissal during a live television appearance on the
He has also worked as a coach at Swindon Town, Leeds United and Spurs.
will be joined at the Stadium of Light by his former Brighton
colleagues Mauricio Taricco and Charlie Oatway, and will work in
conjunction with Sunderland director of football Roberto De Fanti.
first game in charge will be a league game at Swansea City on October
19, followed by a first home game against derby rivals Newcastle United
on October 27.