David Moyes is confident he retains the support of Sunderland owner Ellis Short despite his team’s woeful run of form.
The Wearsiders have made the worst start to a season in Premier League history and are firmly rooted to the foot of the table having claimed just two points from their opening 10 games.
Reports this week have suggested Moyes, who took charge in July, will be axed should Sunderland lose again at Bournemouth on Saturday, but the former Manchester United boss is confident he will be given more time at the Stadium of Light.
He told a news conference: “I speak to the owner quite regularly, I have seen him this week and he’s all fine.”
Asked if he feels Short is still behind him, the Scot replied: “Yes, yes, yes.”
Moyes accepts, however, that there is bound to be speculation regarding his future given Sunderland’s struggles.
“When you’re at the bottom and you’re losing, it’s going to happen, it comes with the territory,” he said.
“You expect it because we are not winning enough games.
“Ellis is very good, [chief executive] Martin Bain is very good, we understand the job we have to do here and as we said at the start, it’s not short term that’s for sure.
“I have had some great times in football and I’m looking forward to the next great times but you are always going to have bad times.
“If you come into football management and think it’s all good… far from it.
“These are testing times, you have to keep doing the right things and keep the players believing.”
Moyes’ task has not been helped by a crippling injury list with a number of key players absent for the majority of games.
John O’Shea will miss the trip to Bournemouth – a match Moyes will watch from the stands due to a one-game touchline ban imposed by the Football Association – after limping off in the 4-1 defeat to Arsenal last weekend while Seb Larsson and Lee Cattermole are improving but still not ready to return.
One player who could improve a threadbare squad is striker Dimitar Berbatov.
Berbatov, 35, has been a free agent since leaving Greek side PAOK in June and Moyes said he was aware of the Bulgarian’s situation, adding: “We’re always interested in good players and Berbatov is a good player.
“Whether that’s for us is another story.”