Next Hibs manager latest: Club open to foreign coach as numerous applications come in

Hibs are open to appointing a foreign manager after being inundated with applications for the Easter Road vacancy since parting company with Jack Ross.

Hibs owner Ron Gordon is based in the US.
Hibs owner Ron Gordon is based in the US.

The 45-year-old was relieved of his duties in the wake of Wednesday’s 1-0 defeat by Livingston, with Hibs having taken just four points from 27 in the cinch Premiership and on a run of one win in nine league matches.

However, they are in the Premier Sports Cup final and while only eight points above the relegation zone, they are also only six points off fourth place and therefore an attractive proposition for many managers.

Applications from Scotland, England and across the world have arrived at the door of chief executive Ben Kensell, who is leading up the search for Ross’ successor, while the board has also put together a list of candidates they would like to talk to.

The Scotsman understands that Hibs will not limit their search domestically, as has been done under previous regimes, with current owner Ron Gordon based in the US. The Peruvian-born businessman has already strengthened ties between the club and the American market since taking over in the summer of 2019 and played a big part in the pre-contract signing of USA internationalist Chris Mueller, who joins officially on January 1.

Former Norwich and Preston manager Alex Neil was installed as the early bookmakers’ favourites for the job, although it is believed that his preference is for a return to English football. Ex-Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes has also been linked, alongside Neil Lennon – who managed Hibs between 2016 and 2019 – and James McPake, who is currently at Dundee but spent time at Hibs as captain.

David Gray, who only swapped playing for coaching this summer, has been placed in caretaker charge of Hibs and will be in the dugout for Saturday’s league match against St Mirren. Hibs are now expected to take their time in appointing their new manager, with the likelihood increasing that Gray will also be asked to take the team for next Tuesday’s Premiership hosting of Dundee and the cup final a week on Sunday against Celtic at Hampden.

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