FORMER Hull City manager Phil Brown has emerged as a serious contender to take the vacant manager's job at Limerick.
The 53-year-old is set to be interviewed by the ambitious Shannonsiders after declaring his interest in the role, and he has been given a positive reference by West Ham manager Sam Allardyce, who started his managerial career in Limerick.
Brown served as assistant boss to Allardyce at both Blackpool and Bolton before moving out on his own at Derby County. Yet he really made his name at Hull by taking the Championship relegation contenders to the Premier League for the first time in their history.
After being linked with some high-profile jobs, Brown kept the Tigers up in their first campaign before struggling second time around and he was replaced by Iain Dowie ahead of their relegation. His last job was at Preston, but he left Deepdale within the space of a year after an unsuccessful stint.
He has been linked with a number of roles in recent weeks, but is attracted by the project in Limerick. After securing promotion to the top flight, they are in line to spend 2013 at Thomond Park while a new ground at their spiritual home, the Markets Field, is constructed.
Limerick want a high-profile figure in their dugout and have already spoken to former England caretaker boss Peter Taylor – who also has Premier League experience – about relocating to Ireland.