The hunt for the next Motherwell manager is under way after Iain Baraclough won the Scottish Premiership sack race, writes Scottishfootballtips‘ Vincent Mulligan.
The former Sligo Rovers boss’ head finally rolled when Motherwell were knocked out of the Third Round of the Scottish League Cup by the Championship’s Greenock Morton.
Fans of The Steelmen have been lamenting a host of poor performances this season as things have gotten progressively worse under the Englishman’s control. Having amassed just 7 points this season the cup exit was enough to bring the end of days for Barraclough.
The question that now remains is who is likely to replace him in the hot-seat at Fir Park?
As ever the bookies have opened a book on the next Motherwell manager and we take a look at some of the main contenders.
Manager markets are notoriously difficult to predict with the parameters shifting continuously. It’s advisable to treat any bets on these markets as fun bets, unless of course you have some concrete information to hand.
STEPHEN CRAIGAN – Odds 3/1
The former ‘Well stalwart is currently coaching the U20’s at Fir Park and is a popular figure amongst the Motherwell faithful. He captained the side during his playing career and is in position having been handed temporary control by the board.
The current bookies’ favourite will have the chance to lay claim to the job if he can turn around the sides fortunes quickly. Replacing sacked managers with current staff members is popular in Scottish football and has been done by Celtic, Kilmarnock and Saint Johnstone in recent seasons.
IAN McCALL – Odds 11/4
The current Ayr Utd manager has been getting plaudits for his performance on the west coast. The Honest Men are leading Scottish League One despite the presence of big spending Dunfermline Athletic.
He certainly has experience having managed Dundee United in the old SPL but was unceremoniously sacked while facing a relegation battle with The Tangerines.
BILLY DAVIES – Odds 33/1
Having led Forest to the English Championship playoffs twice Davies has earned a reputation for being a thorough professional. His age may count against him if Motherwell follow other progressive Scottish clubs and appoint an up and coming but inexperienced coach.
The former Derby County and Nottingham Forest coach has been unemployed since March 2014. He was strongly connected with the Rangers position after Ally McCoist and Kenny McDowell both left the post last season.
STUART McCALL – Odds 10/1
The Former Motherwell manager Stuart McCall took temporary charge at Ibrox before being released at the end of the season having been beaten in the playoffs by Motherwell.
He was briefly included in some books before the bookies realised there is more chance of Craig Brown returning. Craig Brown is available to back at 50/1 with Skybet if you have some money to throw away.
STEVIE AITKEN – Odds 33/1
Just a few years ago Stevie Aitken was coaching youths at Arthurlie of the SJFA West Of Scotland Premier Division. Having done an excellent job at Stranraer where he led them to 2nd place in Scottish League One Aitken earned himself a move to Dumbarton.
With no full-time management experience it would be a huge surprise if he was to be plucked from the Championship at this stage. He may well be one for the future but it looks too soon for him.
DEREK ADAMS – Odds 25/1
Adams holds the distinction of managing Ross County without defeat in the league for more than a calendar year. The fact that this was done on Scotland’s highest two division only adds to it’s remarkable quality.
He was the next big thing with many Aberdeen fans clamouring for him to be appointed after Craig Brown stepped down to be replace by Derek McInnes.
At just 40 years old he has a phenomenal amount of managerial experience with two divisional titles and a Scottish Cup final under his belt. He is currently steering Plymouth Argyle to 4th place in England’s League Two and may not want to leave a post he is doing well in.
THE JOKE BETS
There are of course the usual joke candidates like Pep Guardiola at 10/1. Perhaps he has decided that playing with strikers who can score five goals in 9 minutes is too easy. Or that there just isn’t enough local rivalry in The Bundesliga and the Lanarkshire Derby is something he has admired from afar. Either way it’s an unlikely fit.
You can add Dennis Berkamp, Ruud Gullit, Alan Curbishley and a host of other usual suspects to the list at prices that make little or no sense. The chances of Roy Hodgson giving up on his England international career, for example, seem to be a little longer than the 66/1 on offer.
THE RUMOUR MILL
Rumour has it that Jimmy Calderwood was spotted in a local internet cafe emailing his CV to Motherwell’s General Manager Alan Burrows. He was overheard on his phone, apparently speaking to his agent saying “you have to get me back on BBC Scotland. People need to know I am available”. To which his agent replied “It’s ok Jimmy. You’ll always be available”.
So who do you think will be the next Motherwell manager?
* Odds correct at the time of going to press.