Mick McCarthy has revealed he would "love" to manage again in the Premier League - but has admitted an untimely trip to Sunderland started some gossip about a return to the Black Cats.
The 59-year-old, who left Championship side Ipswich last month, was travelling on a train to pick up a car in Sunderland the day after Chris Coleman left the club.
McCarthy was spotted by a train worker, who saw an opportunity to make a bit of money.
"The cleaner saw me and did a double take," McCarthy told the Danny Baker Show on Five Live.
"He said 'are you Mick McCarthy? You're after the Sunderland job aren't you?'.
"I said 'I'm not actually. I'm going to see a friend and pick a car up'.
"He said 'I don't believe you, you're going for the Sunderland job'. So he walked off and came back and said 'I've had 100 quid on at 11/8'."
McCarthy was also spotted in Sunderland by fans, and after posing for selfies, rumours started on social media that he would be returning to the club he left in 2006.
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Sunderland have sacked manager Chris Coleman after failing to keep the club in the Sky Bet Championship.
The 47-year-old left his role as Wales national team boss to succeed Simon Grayson at the Stadium of Light last November.
But Coleman could not prevent the Black Cats from suffering relegation during his five months in charge.
A statement on the club's official website read: "Sunderland AFC announces that manager Chris Coleman and his assistant Kit Symons have been released from their contracts.
"The club would like to place on record its sincere thanks to Chris and Kit for their tireless efforts in what has been a hugely disappointing season for everyone involved with the club.
"The club is unable to make further comment at this time."
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Darron Gibson has left Sunderland by mutual consent, having initially been suspended by the club after he was charged with drink driving earlier this month, the Championship side have announced.
Gibson was initially arrested after several vehicles were damaged close to the club's Academy of Light training ground on March 17 as his team-mates prepared for their Sky Bet Championship clash with Preston at the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland suspended the 30-year-old midfielder with immediate effect in order to carry out an investigation.
A club statement said: "Following the conclusion of his recent suspension, Darron Gibson will leave Sunderland AFC by mutual consent."
The Republic of Ireland international joined the Black Cats in January 2017 but was unable to prevent their relegation from the Premier League last season and made the last of his 27 league appearances for the club in a New Year's Day defeat to Barnsley.
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Chris Coleman has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal to become Sunderland manager, the Sky Bet Championship club have announced.
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