Sunderland have appointed Dick Advocaat as their new manager until the end of the season, BBC reports. The former Netherlands coach takes over a day after the sacking of Gus Poyet with the Black Cats one point above the Premier League relegation zone. “We have one aim only now – to climb the table – and everyone is fully focused on the task ahead of us,” said Sunderland chairman Ellis Short. Advocaat, 67, said: “I can’t wait to get started.” Sunderland is a big club and I am very much looking forward to the challenge ahead,” said the Dutchman. “We must now concentrate on Saturday as a priority.” Zeljko Petrovic will be Advocaat’s first-team coach, while former Swansea and England Under-20 goalkeeping coach Adrian Tucker will also be part of his backroom staff.
Dick Advocaat has never managed in the Premier League but was in charge of Scottish club Rangers between 1998 and 2002. He won the league and cup double twice at Ibrox, while he also has league titles with PSV Eindhoven in his homeland as well as Zenit St Petersburg in Russia. The Dutchman also led Zenit to victory over Rangers in the 2008 Uefa Cup final – now known as the Europa League – while his side also beat Manchester United in the Uefa Super Cup later that year. On the international front, apart from coaching Netherlands twice, he has also managed United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Belgium, Russia and Serbia. He stepped down as Serbia coach in November a day after a 3-1 Euro 2016 qualifying defeat against Denmark which left the country joint bottom of Group I. Advocaat was just four months into a two-year contract after replacing Sinisa Mihajlovic and had been in charge for three games.