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23rd Jul 2016

Is this *another* Sunderland dig at Sam Allardyce as they unveil David Moyes as new boss?

It burns!

Ben Kenyon

Okay, we get it. Sunderland are pissed off that Sam Allardyce left the club completely in the shit to swan off and become the new England manager just weeks before the new Premier League season.

Sunderland have made no secret of the fact that Allardyce is no longer flavour of the month on Wearside. In fact name Allardyce is mud in the red and white half of the North East.

Big Sam, who famously danced a sexy dance for the Sunderland faithful after keeping the Black Cats in the Prem at the expense of rivals Newcastle, wasn’t so much as given a ‘thank you’ or ‘goodbye’.

The club’s official statement on the 61-year-old’s departure contained just 59 words, none of which were ‘good luck’, ‘bon chance’, ‘cheers’ or ‘congratulations’.

Some might have seen that as a sleight against Allardyce, who took over the ailing club in October when they were sat in 19th with just three points before saving them from the drop.

But if that parting statement was cold and unfeeling towards their larger-than-life ex boss, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Former Manchester United boss David Moyes was triumphantly unveiled as new manager at the Stadium of Light in a four-year deal.

But it seems like the whole Allardyce thing might be still quite raw, despite bagging the United ‘legend’ to take the club forward.

As the club officially announced his appointment, it appeared there may have been not one, not two but three digs at Big Sam.

Sunderland Chairman Ellis Short made the following statement as Moyes joined the club:

“We are absolutely delighted to welcome David Moyes to Sunderland, who was by far and away our first choice.  

“He is a man whose football pedigree speaks for itself and is someone I have long admired. I have spoken with him on many occasions and I have always been hugely impressed.

“He was my number one managerial target for the last five appointments, but his desire to honour existing contracts meant we were not able to bring him to Sunderland previously.

“To be able to finally welcome him as our manager is fantastic news for the club.  

“The fact that David has committed to a four-year deal is a clear demonstration of his belief in what he can achieve here. It is our aim to become a better, stronger and more stable football club and with a manager of David’s calibre and experience at the helm, we have a fantastic opportunity to begin looking upwards, rather than downwards every season.”

While it’s clear they’re very excited about the new man coming in, you can’t help but notice a few things jumping out.

The line that Moyes was ‘number 1 managerial target for the last five appointments’ hints that maybe Big Sam was just a back up man.

Then the part about Moyes’ “desire to honour existing contracts” could very well be a dig at Allardyce jumping ship fr the England job not even half way through his two-year Sunderland deal.

And then the final line about it being a “fantastic opportunity to begin looking upwards, rather than downwards every season” could very well be a dig at how they saw Allardyce’s tenure.

Or maybe we’re just reading too much into it, maybe…

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