Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill has emerged as a frontrunner for the Sunderland job, according to the Daily Mail.

He joins Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom and ex-Rangers boss Ally McCoist on their three man shortlist for the hot-seat at the Stadium of Light. Their chief executive Martin Bain wants to speak to the candidates before the weekend.

The Daily Mail are suggesting Michael O’Neill is a top target for Sunderland. He is being linked with a move away from Northern Ireland after they failed to qualify for the World Cup against Switzerland in their Play-Off. Nevertheless, there is no doubt that he has done a tremendous job with Northern Ireland in his six years in charge.

The 48 year-old guided them to Euro 2016 qualification, which was the first time in 30 years that Northern Ireland had qualified for a major tournament.

As a player, O’Neill played for the likes of Hibernian, Newcastle United, Dundee United, Coventry City, Wigan Athletic and Glentoran. His first managerial job was with Scottish side Brechin City in 2006. After two years in Scotland, he left to join Shamrock Rovers.

O’Neill won two titles with Shamrock and made history by being the first manager of a league of Ireland team to reach the group stages of a European competition. He was then appointed manager of Northern Ireland in 2011.

Michael O’Neill has had a successful career so far and he would be a great appointment for Sunderland if they can persuade him to join them. They are currently bottom of the Championship.

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Hull City writer for The72. Twitter- @Harry_Mail1.

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