SAFC have sealed their biggest signing of the summer as Gus Poyet commits to a new two-year contract ruling out the possibility of a summer exit.
It really feels like a pivotal moment in at least the short term future of this football club, stability is always necessary but this time you sense it’s stability with the right man unlike recent seasons.
What’s more, it is the clearest indication yet that the restraints surrounding the Head Coach role have been loosened hopefully diminishing any possibility of repeating last summer’s catastrophic and ultimately expensive errors. Poyet was never quiet about his belief that things surrounding the club and the power he had were unsustainable so compromises must have been made by the board.
At the end of the day, Ellis Short was pretty much over a barrel in that scenario. Wembley, double of the Mags, away games against Chelsea, Manchester United, Everton, four points over the eventual champions Manchester City all amalgamating into the miracle that was 2013/14. How could he let Gus go?
The contract may not be a huge one and only until 2016, but a longer term contract was always unlikely to be on the table from both sides. Poyet is a young manager with obviously big ambitions which he may not be able to reach on Wearside, whilst Short wants to cover himself against any potential disaster during his tenure. Whether Poyet stays beyond 2016 will without doubt be decided between our success and Short’s willingness to bankroll a move to the next level, both of which are questionable but the latter less probable.
Poyet’s comments after signing the contract read like a man delighted to have the matter resolved and more evidence his intentions were always to stay;
“I am delighted to extend my stay with Sunderland AFC, after an unbelievable season and our famous great escape.
"Stability is absolutely key to long-term and sustained success for any football club, and this new contract gives both the club and me that stability going forward.
“Now it's a different challenge for me and the club and I am relishing the next stage with Sunderland. We achieved so much last season, working together - the club and the fans - and we took many good memories from the season.
"The prospect of creating more of those memories is one which excites me, and now I cannot wait for the next chapter in my career and the history of Sunderland AFC."
It is also confirmed that the staff brought with Gus are, predictably, all staying on – most notably Mauricio Taricco and Charlie Oatway.
So with one player already signed and Gus definitely staying, I think it’s about time we all started getting excited for the new season once again – let’s hope our expectations are fulfilled.
Pipe down Hammers, Baggies, Saints – can’t touch this.