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Dutchman Throws His Hat Into The Ring?

According to several credible reports, including CNN's John Sinnott, Dutch manager Fred Rutten has contacted Sunderland to make them aware of his availability.

The 50-year old is currently out of work, however has had previous spells in management at Twente, Schalke, PSV and Vitesse.

Rutten may not have any experience of the English game, but does boast an impressive resume, with a win percentage of over 52% at each of his clubs, barring Schalke where he slumped to 41%. Even then, he lost only 8 of 24 games in charge of the Germans. Averaged over his career, it's a 55% win percentage, and only 19% loss.

Intriguingly his preferred formation appears to be that of a 4-3-3, similar to what Kevin Ball has been trying to implement during his three games in charge of the club. Perhaps Rutten can offer slightly more experience and nous to get things working.

It must be said that to this point Rutten appears to be still very, very much an outsider for the job as many media speculate it's a straight shoot-out between Gus Poyet and Kevin Ball. Rutten's availability and willingness does however muddy the waters slightly.

It's largely expected that an announcement will be made imminently to give whoever does come in the maximum amount of time to work with their new squad of players during the international break.

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