Why Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes would find it difficult to turn down Sunderland job

Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes
Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes
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Alex McLeish believes the vacant manager's post at Sunderland is a "big job" and that Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes would find it difficult to turn down.

McInnes, currently on holiday, has been the leading contender to replace David Moyes at the Stadium of Light despite a flurry of bets on Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs on Wednesday.

Giggs remains the bookies favourite but his odds have drifted and the Echo understands there has been no contact yet between the Black Cats and Giggs.

Chief executive Martin Bain is stepping up the search for a new manager this week and is expected to meet some of the prominent candidates.

The Scot is known to favour experience of the Championship, given the scale of the rebuilding job required at Sunderland, hence why the likes of McInnes, Paul Lambert and Paul Heckingbottom have been mentioned.

And McLeish says the chance to take on one of the "big jobs" in England doesn't come round too often.

Ex-Rangers, Scotland and Birmingham City boss McLeish told the Evening Express: "I would go to Sunderland in a shot if I was offered the job.

"Derek has done a great job at Aberdeen but the opportunity to take one of the big jobs in England doesn’t come along too often.

"And Sunderland is a big job."

Giggs himself is minded to wait for an opportunity to manage in the Premier League, narrowly missing out on the Swansea City job last year when the club opted for Bob Bradley instead.

He was the firm early favourite to replace Steve Agnew at Middlesbrough, but Garry Monk and Nigel Pearson look to be in pole position to compete for that role.

Sunderland have been determined to take their time in replacing Moyes in order to find the right candidate, with a large number of candidates interest in the role.

Meanwhile, Dons legend Brian Irvine told the Evening Express he is worried his old club might take years to recover if manager McInnes moves on to Sunderland, likening the scenario to when Sir Alex Ferguson left Manchester United.

"I reckon it would have the same impact on the club as Fergie leaving," said Irvine.

"It would be very difficult for the club.

"The problem for the board then would be who would they get to replace him?

"Even more so with so little time to go before the players are due to come back for the build-up to their Europa League campaign.

"There would be huge pressure on the directors to find the right man to succeed Derek.

"There is always a bit of turmoil after a manager leaves who has been successful.

"It happened at Aberdeen after Fergie left for United – and it’s been the same for them since he retired from his job at Old Trafford."