Derry City will take their time on new manager appointment

Derry City players warm up prior to their FAI Cup quarter-final tie Bohemians at the Brandywell.
Derry City players warm up prior to their FAI Cup quarter-final tie Bohemians at the Brandywell.

DERRY CITY chairman Philip O’Doherty claims he is in no rush to appoint Kenny Shiels’ successor despite a host of names being linked with the vacant post.

The Brandywell chairman revealed that Kenny Shiels’ replacement would not be appointed over the coming days and that the club will use Paddy McCourt’s League of Ireland knowledge to assess the current squad.

With the likes of Nicky Low, Rory Hale, Gavin Peers, Ben Fisk, Eric Grimes, Dan Seaborne and Kevin McHattie all having already left, Mr. O’Doherty did admit that Derry needed to move fast in relation to the re-signing of players.

“I think we have six players under contract, but we have compiled a shortlist in the meantime. We will continue to talk to players in an effor to find out where they stand.

“We have Tony (O’Doherty) and obviously a back-room staff as well as people like Paddy McCourt who may offer some advice but, ideally, we would like to have a manager in place before signings are confirmed. We have to make sure we don’t lose players in the short term. Obviously there are players we want to keep, especially the younger lads.”

While the chairman wouldn’t be drawn on identifying targets, it is believed the club may examine local interest first.

Nevertheless ex-Ipswich Town and QPR boss Jim Magilton - who was Michael O’Neill’s number two at Shamrock Rovers in 2011 - could be among those considered for the vacancy.

Ian Baraclough has been doing a fantastic job with N. Ireland’s U21s and the former Sligo Rovers manager - who guided the Bit O’ Red to League of Ireland Premier Division title success in 2013 - has also been mentioned.

Local contenders are thought to be former boss Declan Devine, who guided his home town club to FAI Cup success in 2012; current Finn Harps number two Paul Hegarty and Marty McCann, who was a ex-Brandywell coach under Peter Hutton’s stewardship.

While former Candy Stripes favourite Darren Kelly, currently managing in England with Hyde United, has also thrown his name into the hat.

However, a significant stumbling block when appointing Shiels’ successor is the fact that the new boss must hold a Pro Licence thanks to a new FAI directive which applies to all Premier Division managers in the League of Ireland from next season on.

That being the case, those not holding the necessary coaching badges will be discarded.