Next Hibs manager: What Roy Keane had to say about return to the dugout and how likely it will be Easter Road

Over the weekend, Roy Keane emerged as a contender to fill the vacant Hibs managerial role following the departure of Shaun Maloney.

The Easter Road hierarchy, led by owner Ron Gordon, took the decision to relieve Maloney of his duties after 19 games with the team in the bottom six and dumped out of the Scottish Cup by rivals Hearts.

Gordon spoke of the “trend” with the board concerned about the direction of the team under the manager.

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Hibs are now on the hunt for their sixth manager in the last six years

"We will cast our net wider in terms of recruitment of coaches and players and the kind of football we want to play," Gordon said regarding the managerial search. “We don't want to limit ourselves. We have a list of potentials and it has a little bit of everything, but many are from the UK. They are here, they understand the game and the dynamic, so there's some comfort in that.”

Reports in Ireland suggested Hibs were set to try and convince Keane that his future lay in Leith. The Scotsman understands the Manchester United legend and former Celtic midfielder is keen on the Easter Road position. Hibs have not ruled out the former Sunderland and Ipswich Town manager, but are wary that he has not been a manager for more than 11 years since leaving his job at Ipswich.

Keane enjoyed success at Sunderland, leading the team to the Championship title and promotion to the Premier League in his first season in charge before guiding the Black Cats to 15th. He left midway through his third season.

At Ipswich, he took over towards the end of the 2008/09 season and recorded positive results. But would have just one full campaign with the Tractor Boys finishing 15th in the English second tier.

Roy Keane has been linked with the Hibs job. Picture: SNS

Since then, the 50-year-old has become a popular pundit on Sky Sports, while he has held assistant manager positions at Aston Villa, Nottingham Forest and the Republic of Ireland national team.

‘Pulling at me to go back in’

Keane has been open about a desire to return to management. In a conversation with Gary Neville on The Overlap, he spoke about wanting to get back in.

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“I’m pretty content with where I am at he moment,” he said. “I have my days where I can be restless, like everybody else. I want to be careful with what I wish for. I say to you, do I want to get back into management but realistically where am I going to go back into. The Championship, the top of League One?

Keane was last in a manager's role in 2011 with Ipswich Town. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

"There’s something in there where I could be a good manager. That’s pulling at me to go back in.

"Where I got it right at Sunderland, the recruitment. I got it wrong at Ipswich.”

He added: “Perception. People think I'm probably not up to it. They see me on the television and think ‘he’s a bit of a head case’. I fell out with [Mick] McCarthy and [Alex] Ferguson. They think ‘he’s trouble’. I don’t think I am.”

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