Monday 10 December 2018

Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane appear to be heading for the exit door - Here are six men who could become the next Irish manager

Stephen Kenny, Roy Keane and Robbie Keane are likely to be shortlisted
Stephen Kenny, Roy Keane and Robbie Keane are likely to be shortlisted Newsdesk Newsdesk

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill is in talks with Stoke over becoming their next manager and it appears as though Roy Keane will follow him to the Britannia if a deal is struck. Who will the FAI turn to if the Derryman departs?

Roy Keane

The Corkman has been the heir apparent to O'Neill for some time and if he opts out of the Stoke adventure he will surely top the shortlist to take over the national team.

The former Manchester United and Ireland captain would bring a lot of continuity to the role but that might not tally with the wishes of the Irish football public who were largely dismayed by the manner of the defeat to the Danes.

Mick McCarthy

He declared an interest in returning to the Irish post during Giovanni Trapattoni's struggles and was strongly linked to a return before O'Neill was ratified in 2013.

His relationship with the Ipswich Town faithful has been fraught at times and the impression he has given in the past is that he would be better capable of thriving in managerial role with Ireland now than he was in 1996.

He would be a popular appointment.

Stephen Kenny

The Dundalk boss inspired his charges to heroic performances on their Europa League run and got the most out of the talent at his disposal at Oriel Park, many of whom are now plying their trade in England and have earned international recognition.

Would he be capable of matching the achievements of Michael O'Neill at Northern Ireland? We won't know unless he gets the job.

His in-depth knowledge of the Irish game is a big positive.

Neil Lennon

The former Celtic boss has spoken of his desire to manage the Irish team on many occasions.

Having gained experience on the club scene, the Hibs boss might feel as though the time is right to tackle the international game.

Michael O'Neill

Having led Northern Ireland to Euro 2016 and the cusp of qualification for this year's World Cup, O'Neill's stock has risen considerably.

His exploits with Shamrock Rovers will also play into his favour as will the style of football he deployed at Windsor Park.

Robbie Keane

Currently plying his trade in the Indian Super League with ATK, Ireland's record goalscorer is keen on a move into management and has completed his coaching badges with the FAI's assistance.

His lack of experience is a negative but the association has not been afraid to gamble on a young manager.

It worked with McCarthy but backfired with Steve Staunton.

Most likely one for the future.

Here are the odds on the next Ireland boss from Paddy Power (prices subject to change):


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