Sunderland chairman Ellis Short praises Kevin Ball despite rejecting his job claims

THANKS ... Ball and Stockdale.
THANKS ... Ball and Stockdale.

SUNDERLAND chairman Ellis Short has paid tribute to Kevin Ball after rejecting the chance to appoint him as Sunderland’s new head coach.

Black Cats legend Ball stepped into the hotseat after Paolo Di Canio’s dismissal with the club in a state of turmoil.

He guided Sunderland to a Capital One Cup win over Peterborough in his first game in charge, and gained plaudits – if not any points – for the way the team played in the two tough Premier League games against Liverpool and Manchester United.

Ball made no secret of his desire to get the job full-time, but Short decided instead to appoint Gus Poyet today.

The American said: “I would like to thank Kevin, along with Robbie Stockdale, Mark Prudhoe and Scott Pearce, who stepped in at a moment’s notice in what was a very difficult situation.

“Without any hesitation, they gave 100 per cent to the cause.

“As usual, Kevin gave his all for the benefit of our club and we are very grateful to him for his ongoing commitment.”