Sunderland have begun drawing up contingency plans for the appointment of a new manager should Sam Allardyce take the England national team job, with Burnley boss Sean Dyche among the front-runners to take over at the Stadium of Light, according to theDaily Mail.
Dyche has been growing his reputation as a manager with his impressive work as manager at Burnley, and is regarded as one of the country's brightest managerial prospects.
However, it remains to be seen whether Dyche would be willing to leave Turf Moor for the Stadium of Light, especially given the fact that he has led the club back into the Premier League.
Allardyce is among the front-runners to take over at England, and held talks with the FA over the position on Tuesday, leaving Sunderland's pre-season training camp in Austria in the process.
Sunderland had originally said that Allardyce was flying back to England to discuss transfer targets, but on Wednesday morning the club confirmed that they had given the 61-year-old permission to speak to the FA about the vacancy.
Sunderland released a statement saying, "The Football Association contacted Sunderland AFC to seek permission to speak with our manager as part of what was supposed to be a confidential discussion process with potential candidates for the position of England manager.
"At Sam Allardyce's request, we agreed to this.
"Sam is very much key to our plans. After what was an extremely challenging season, we are keen to see a period of stability, both on and off the field, and we want him to remain as manager of our football club."
The ongoing speculation over Sam's position is extremely damaging to Sunderland AFC, particularly at this crucial time of the season and we urge the FA to respect the disruption that this process is causing and bring about a swift resolution to the matter.