Jim Goodwin favourite to replace Oran Kearney at St Mirren

St Mirren look set to lose manager Oran Kearney. Picture: SNS
St Mirren look set to lose manager Oran Kearney. Picture: SNS
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Oran Kearney’s time as St Mirren manager is all but over. Lawyers from both sides will look to thrash out a settlement deal today to formally bring to an end the Northern Irishman’s nine-month stint in charge of the Paisley club.

The bad feeling between Kearney and St Mirren chairman Gordon Scott has boiled over to the point that the former Coleraine boss can’t continue in the job. Kearney, who will not be involved when the squad returns for pre-season training this morning, is expected to formally leave the club at some point today if a pay-off agreement can be reached.

The row centres on Kearney’s desire to continue travelling from his family home in Ballymoney rather than moving his wife and twin children over to live with him in Scotland.

The 40-year-old had wanted to turn that into a daily commute after selling his house in Paisley before agreeing to a compromise of going back and forth twice a week as he did for most of last season.

When Scott questioned his manager’s long-term commitment to the role, Kearney took exception, further souring a relationship that had already started to become strained.

He will now be expected to return to Coleraine who have yet to fill their managerial vacancy after sacking Rodney

McAree six weeks ago, and also take up his old PE teacher’s role that had been kept open for him until September.

The move will disappoint many St Mirren fans who have warmed to Kearney after he succeeded former manager Alan Stubbs and kept the team in the Premiership via the play-off penalty shootout win over Dundee United last month.

The search for his successor will now formally begin, with Alloa Athletic manager Jim Goodwin the favourite to return to the club that he captained to League Cup success in 2013.

Due to the situation, St Mirren are unlikely to now play Coleraine in a pre-season friendly this Saturday but still intend on fulfilling their fixture with Belfast club Rosario YFC on Friday night before heading to Spain for a week’s training camp.

Gus MacPherson, the club’s technical director, is expected to take training today at Ralston alongside academy head Allan McManus and sports scientist Junior Mendes.

In better news for St Mirren, Mihai Popescu is close to sealing a return to the club after Dinamo Bucharest agreed

to drop their price for the defender.