SUNDERLAND, England -- Sunderland says it has hired former Manchester United coach David Moyes as manager, a day after Sam Allardyce left the Premier League club to take charge of England's national team.

Sunderland said in a statement Saturday that 53-year-old Moyes signed a four-year contract with the club, which just avoided relegation last season.

Moyes' relative success at Everton from 2002-13 earned him the job at United after Alex Ferguson's retirement, but he lasted less than a season following a series of disappointing results.

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He took over at Real Sociedad in Spain, but was sacked last November after a poor start to the season.

Sunderland chairman Ellis Short says Moyes "was by far and away our first choice ... we have a fantastic opportunity to begin looking upwards, rather than downwards every season."