Sunderland chairman Ellis Short had his doubts about sacked manager Martin O'Neill over a month ago, it has been revealed.
Short, 52, reacted with anger after the Black Catsâ€™ defeat at QPR last month and had told pals his cash had been wasted on a string of flop buys, says The Sun.
He was also furious with Oâ€™Neill for failing to show up at training until Thursday last week and believed the Ulsterman had lost the support of the players.
Oâ€™Neill gave Short assurances he would do everything in his power to rally his troops following the draw with Norwich City.
So the hedge-fund tycoon was furious to learn that the man he trusted had spent the international week away from the training ground, only reporting back for duty on Thursday.