The Managerial Contenders


As always, the list of names banded about as candidates for the managers job at Tranmere has been plentiful. So, here’s a quick look at the known contenders, the hotly tipped contenders and a few more we thought up to pass time.

Here’s our list then. Scolari, Sven and Curbishley didn’t quite make it on, but a few others did. Starting with the current caretaker, complete with arguments for and against.

Jason McAteer

For: Current caretaker manager, Macca has already stated he wants the job permanently and would probably be the cheap option for the club. Local lad and all that, he has been learning the coaching side of the game since arriving from Sunderland in 2004.

Against: Has no managerial experience at all and wouldn’t be the most popular choice amongst fans you feel, to say the least. May find changing from “one of the lads” to gaffer difficult.

Mark Wright

For: Wright has been strongly linked with the job on the last two occasions it has become available. Decent record with Chester which includes promotion from the Conference.

Against: He signed a new deal with Chester on Friday having agreed it 24 hours before. The City website stated “events close to home” in terms of job speculation as the reason for him to pen his new deal so promptly. Has also left jobs at Oxford and Peterborough under a cloud.

Gary Peters

For: Seems to have come from nowhere to be in with a chance of getting the job, if rumours are to be beleived. Experienced after spells with Preston and Exeter, he has guided Shrewsbury to a tenth place finish in League Two missing out on the play-offs by only five points, that after being tipped to go down by many.

Against: Would require a compensation pay out as he is under contract at Gay Meadow.

Peter Reid

For: Scouser who is currently out of work (no pun intended) and is a colourful character. Guided Sunderland to promotion and had them competing at the top end of the Premiership for a couple of years.

Against: Possibly out of the clubs price range for a start. Recent spells at Leeds and Coventry haven’t been too successful. Plus, would he be willing to drop into League One?

Lou Macari

For: He had a good playing career before going into management where he has had nearly as many clubs as Delroy Facey. Celtic, Birmingham, Stoke and Huddersfield to name four. He was on pole position for the job before Little took over in 2003 but reportedly took too long considering the contract.

Against: Hasn’t done anything of note for a decade or more. I’d guess many fans would welcome his arrival as much as they would the re-signing of Sean Thornton.

David Kelly

For: His goal at Wembley wrote him into Tranmere folklore before he returned as successful assistant to Ray Mathias in 2002. Has been effective in that role at Rovers, Sheffield United and Preston. Although opinion is split as it is with most of the contenders, he may be one of the more popular choices.

Against: He’s walked out on the club once when the offer of more money came up and that departure still leaves a sour taste with some fans and probably some of the top brass at Prenton Park. Preston would probably require some compensation if we took him plus they may also be a Premiership club next season.

Craig Brown

For: Vastly experienced former Scotland and Preston manager. Has been spotted at a couple of Tranmere games this season and has been out of work for some time.

Against: His name hasn’t been mentioned with many posts recently which may suggest he isn’t looking for a return to management. Things didn’t go too well at Deepdale either.

Ivano Bonetti

For: Bonetti spent one season at Prenton Park as a player where he became good friends with wee Pat Nevin. They nearly took on the management role at Grimsby together at one point but that fell through and Ivano later went on to manage Dundee and guided them into Europe. Could Ivano return to management and tempt Pat to come with him?

Against: Last we heard (link) Bonetti was part of an Italian all-star team who perform on TV each week in Italy re-creating Serie A goals, as strange as it sounds. May not want to go back to management, may not want to come to Tranmere. Would probably want decent transfer funds to bring in some continental flair as he did in Scotland and would likely bring his own staff too (brother Dario being one). An expensive and very unlikely option.

Dariusz Kubicki

For: Spent time on loan at Tranmere from Wolves towards the end of his playing career. Has managerial experience in his native Poland with Legia Warsaw whom he guided to the UEFA Cup, Polonia and currently Gornik Leczna. Can be seen on Sky Sports News each summer talking about Polish teams in the Intertoto Cup. Has stated he’d like to manage in England and even commentated on the Worthington Cup Final in 2000 for Polish TV!

Against: Settled back home in Poland and has been out of the English game for some time. May require high wages and would be considered as a large gamble by many.

Ronnie Moore

For: Good old Ronnie doesn’t seem to be the most popular of people over at Boundary Park, that despite re-building their entire squad and just missing out on the play-offs in little over 12 months in the job. Legend at Prenton Park and would probably be welcomed by many.

Against: Would require compensation to get from Oldham and is probably aiming for another promotion challenge there next season.

Ian Holloway

For: Currently out of work and knows what is required to get out of this league having guided QPR to promotion two years ago.

Against: Is more likely to be looking to stay down south or near his native Bristol. Smart money may be on ‘Olly’ taking over at Swindon Town next season.

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