LONDON (AFP) - Sunderland manager Gus Poyet ended speculation over his future on Wednesday by signing a new deal which will keep him at the Stadium of Light until 2016.
Poyet guided Sunderland to Premier League survival this season but was being mooted as a possible replacement for Mauricio Pochettino at Southampton after the Argentine joined Spurs.
However, despite odds on Poyet’s departure being slashed over recent days, Sunderland chairman Ellis Short managed to tie down the former Brighton manager, who led his side to the League Cup final as well as steering them to Premier League safety.In a statement, Poyet expressed his joy at having signed a new contract.
“I am delighted to extend my stay with Sunderland AFC after an unbelievable season and our famous great escape.
“Now it’s a different challenge for me and the club and I am relishing the next stage with Sunderland.” The 46-year-old replaced Paulo Di Canio in October with the Black Cats bottom of the league after just one point from their opening seven games.
Yet Poyet guided his team to safety, thanks in part to a strong finish to the season which saw them pick up wins at both Chelsea and Manchester United.
Poyet had reportedly caused a stir by suggesting in recent discussions with Sunderland’s hierarchy that there were fundamental problems with the way the club was run.
However, by putting pen to a new deal, Poyet and Sunderland seem to have put any problems behind them.
Indeed, sporting director Ian Congerton signalled the club’s glee at Poyet’s decision to extend his stay.
“We are naturally delighted that Gus has committed his long-term future to Sunderland. Our plans are well under way in terms of summer recruitment and we are working hard to bring new faces to the squad ahead of the 2014-15 season.”