Advocaat stands firm at Sunderland

AFP , Saturday 29 Aug 2015

Dick Advocaat intends to stay at Sunderland until the end of the season despite being this season's betting favourite to be the first Premier League coach to be sent packing.

The veteran Dutchman was a surprise choice to replace Gus Poyet as Sunderland boss in March on a short-term deal with the club facing relegation.

He managed to keep them up and then signed a one-year contract to lead the northeast club during the 2015-16 campaign.

But the early stages of the new season have been tough with Sunderland managing just one point from their first three games.

On top of that, Advocaat has been vocal in his criticism of the club's recent transfer activity saying he is suffering because of "crazy" spending on "lower than average" players in the past.

The former Netherlands, PSV Eindhoven, Rangers and Zenit St Petersburg coach, however, insists he will ride out the storm.

"I never said that I will quit this club. I hope I can stay until the end of the season," Advocaat told a press conference ahead of the Black Cats' league encounter at Aston Villa on Saturday, as quoted by several national newspapers.

"Honestly. This is a great club, I really mean that. I have been at many great clubs but this is a really special one."

Advocaat on Friday signed Sweden international midfielder Ola Toivonen on a season-long loan from French side Rennes, and is adamant Sunderland can bounce back from their slow start to the season.

"I have had a good talk with the president and also the players this week. The team will be there for me," he added.

"We did it last year [avoid relegation] and we will do the same again. That is the feeling I have now - and we know how to do it with the players."

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