Wigan Athletic old-boy tipped for manager's role

Former Wigan Athletic star Shaun Maloney has emerged as the clear favourite to take over as Hibernian manager after the club declared their search was coming to a conclusion.
Shaun Maloney and Gary Caldwell during their Latics daysShaun Maloney and Gary Caldwell during their Latics days
Shaun Maloney and Gary Caldwell during their Latics days

Some bookmakers have suspended betting after reports claimed Maloney was Hibs' main target - with former Latics and Scotland colleague Gary Caldwell possibly as his assistant.

Chief executive Ben Kensell had earlier issued an update on the search for Jack Ross' successor ahead of Tuesday's cinch Premiership game against Dundee, when caretaker David Gray will take charge of his second game.

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Maloney could be handed an extraordinary start to his managerial career when Hibs face his former club, Celtic, in the Premier Sports Cup final on Sunday.

The 38-year-old started his coaching career with Celtic's development squad in 2017 before leaving to work under Belgium manager Roberto Martinez the following year, a position he still fills.

In a statement on the Hibs website, Kensell said: "Firstly, I'd like to place on record my thanks to David Gray, Eddie May and Craig Samson for taking charge of the first team during this interim period.

"We have a big week coming up and I know how hard the players and management team are working to get the performances we are all looking for.

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"As they continue to work tirelessly, I am also fully focused on the task in hand to make sure we get the correct appointment to move this football club forwards.

"I would like to assure all supporters that we are undergoing an incredibly thorough and strategic approach as we recruit a new manager.

"As a club you must continuously plan for the future and have a clear plan in place for every eventuality due to the fast-moving and ever-changing nature of the sport.

"This has allowed us to stay in control of this rigorous process.

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"There has, unsurprisingly, been a lot of interest in the role and speculation in the media regarding the managerial position - and much of this has been wide of the mark.

"We have a clear vision for the football club. We want to acquire a manager who has an attacking mentality and is progressive and hungry for the opportunity to build something special here at a big club in Hibs.

"In summary, our process has been robust and there is clarity and a support plan for the manager we select that will help us achieve our long-term ambitions.

"We are coming to a conclusion, but I'd urge everyone to get behind David Gray, his coaching staff and the players at the important cinch Premiership game against Dundee and we will update supporters in the near future regarding an appointment."

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Ross was sacked last week after a seventh defeat in nine league matches.

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