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Published: 06:51 | 24/4/16

Allardyce: Retirement "not on the horizon"

Sunderland boss considered quitting last summer

Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce says he considered leaving the game after his exit from West Ham last summer, but insists retirement is "not on the horizon" at the moment.

Allardyce, 61, says he enjoyed working as a television pundit with Sky Sports after he left Upton Park in the summer of 2015, only to be tempted back by the Sunderland job in October.

"I contemplated retirement," he told the Sunday Telegraph.

"I rotated as a pundit at the start of the season, I didn’t think a job I wanted would come up as soon as it did. It caught me by surprise.

"I couldn’t say no to Sunderland. I was here as a player, I worked as a coach under Peter Reid and coming back here as a manager was not something I could turn down."

Allardyce also hinted that he would stay on as Sunderland boss even if the Black Cats were relegated to the Championship, as he is keen to reach the 1000-game mark as a manager in English football.

Sunderland currently lie 18th in the Premier League table, one point behind 17th placed Norwich City with a game in hand, with matches against Arsenal at the Stadium of Light, Stoke at the Britannia, back-to-back home games against Chelsea and Everton and a final-day visit to Watford to come.

Sunderland’s game against Arsenal on Sunday will be Allardyce's 940th in England, but the former Preston, Blackpool, Notts County, Bolton, Newcastle, Blackburn and West Ham boss also points out that he managed a season in the League of Ireland with Limerick.

"I want to get to 1000 games, I’m too close to that to stop now,” he added.

"If my time at Limerick is counted, I’d be virtually there. That’s a landmark not many get past and I intend to."

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