REPORTS in the North East suggest Wanderers boss Phil Parkinson is on the shortlist to become the next manager of Sunderland.

Stewart Donald is expected to be confirmed as the Wearsiders’ new owner this week after buying the club for £40million from Ellis Short.

And one of his first tasks is replacing Chris Coleman, who was sacked following the club’s relegation to League One.

There had been a degree of uncertainty over Parkinson’s future at Bolton in recent weeks, as Ken Anderson’s search for new investment continued apace – but after a meeting with the chairman on Friday it is understood he has now been given the go-ahead to begin preparations for the new Championship season.

It is unclear at present whether longer-term guarantees have been given, or to what extent new investment in the club will alter the level of control currently held by Anderson.

Parkinson has not spent a penny in four transfer windows since arriving at the Macron Stadium, three of which were spent under a transfer embargo.

He is now hoping to use any cash on offer to create a younger and more energetic side, following the same blueprint laid down by Preston North End since their promotion from League One.

While a departure does look unlikely, Parkinson does have the wealth of experience Sunderland are looking for, and led a fractured Wanderers team out of League One in 2016/17 after a myriad of financial problems and negative publicity.

He also has family in the North East, having lived in Stockton as a youngster.

Former Sunderland midfielder Alex Rae, ex-Blackburn boss Michael Appleton and St Mirren’s Jack Ross are the other names circulating in the Sunderland press, with Parkinson currently fifth favourite at 9/1 with most bookmakers.