According to The Sun, former Rangers manager Ally McCoist is the first choice in the eyes of the club's Cheif Executive Mark Bain to replace Simon Grayson at the struggling Wearside club.
The Championship side are currently bottom of the division following their ignominious relegation from the Premier League last season, and have only managed to accrue 10 points from their 16 games thus far in the league, including a 1-0 loss to Middlesbrough on Sunday.
The Scotsman, who has been free from management since leaving Rangers in 2014, is purported to Bain's primary target to save the club from relegation to League One, having previously worked together at Ibrox.
There is no doubt it would be a huge gamble for the Wearsiders to place such a labouring club in the hands of a manager with no experience in the Championship, let alone English football. In lieu of this, it is understood that another ex-Rangers manager, Walter Smith, would also be brought in to work alongside McCoist, should he be appointed.
It is a massive decision for Bain, who has come under fire from the Club's supporters for his part in their dramatic collapse since their relegation last May.
In addition, the Black Cats' Owner Ellis Short is purportedly yet to be convinced by the proposition of McCoist, and has thus sounded out the currently indisposed Aitor Karanka and Paul Lambert, although neither are apparently keen.
Among the other candidates for the job are club legends Peter Reid and Kevin Phillips, seen as more favourable from the supporters' perspective.