Football: Poyet set to be named Sunderland boss: Report

LONDON (AFP) - Controversial Uruguayan Gus Poyet looks set to be appointed manager of English Premier League strugglers Sunderland, according to the BBC on Monday.

The 45-year-old - who was sacked by his previous club Brighton for gross misconduct at the end of last season - had admitted earlier this season he had been watching several of the teams likely to struggle as he thought he would have a chance of getting the job should their manager be sacked.

According to the BBC, Poyet has held talks with Sunderland owner Ellis Short about a three year contract.

Kevin Ball has been in charge since Sunderland sacked Paolo Di Canio on Sept 22, bringing to an end an eventful six month spell in charge which had seen him save them from relegation but also featured serious dressing room unrest.

Poyet, a former Uruguay international midfielder, enjoyed a successful four-year spell with Brighton, guiding them to promotion to the second tier Championship and then to the play-offs last term.

However, off the field matters intervened in May when he was suspended and then following an enquiry was sacked for gross misconduct, though, Brighton refused to reveal what it was.

Poyet, who has no experience of managing in the Premier League, although he was first team coach at Spurs for a season, has taken legal action over his sacking.

Poyet said recently he had watched Sunderland a lot this season as he expected Di Canio to struggle to keep his job.

"I planned that, over the first matches of this season, I would pay a lot of attention to the teams I thought could be in trouble.

"Of course, I watch Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester, but there was a group of teams who, if they didn't start well, I thought I could have a chance.

"I was watching Sunderland a lot. People were talking a lot about them in the summer because of Paolo and how many new players they had, so I have seen quite a lot of them." Sunderland are bottom of the table with just one point after seven matches of the campaign.