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Britton calls for Clarets to take their time
FORMER Burnley favourite Ian Britton insists it is not imperative for the Clarets to have a manager in place before Saturday’s visit of Blackpool.
The search for Eddie Howe’s successor continued yesterday, with former Wolves boss Mick McCarthy and bookmakers’ favourite Michael Appleton believed to be high on the board’s list of targets.
Further talks are understood to be planned in the coming days, with ex-Clarets Warren Joyce and Steve Davis, the current Crewe manager, believed to be of interest to the Burnley hierarchy.
The Clarets have a busy programme when Championship action resumes following the two-week break for internationals. After entertain-ing Blackpool in Saturday’s televised fixture, Burnley then face tough trips to Bristol City next Tuesday and leaders Cardiff City four days later.
But Britton has urged the Clarets not to use an action-packed week as a reason to rush into an appointment.
“I’m not sure it’s imperative to have someone in place before then,” said the former Burnley and Blackpool winger (pictured below).
“I know there are games coming up but I wouldn’t like them to rush to get a manager like we did when Owen Coyle left.
“Maybe giving some-one the job until the end of the season could be an option, and re-assess it then.”
But Britton is mindful that the club is in the unusual position of having two neighbouring Championship clubs also scouring a similar market, with both Blackburn Rovers and Bolton Wanderers looking for someone to take the managerial reins also, which may hasten their own search.
“That’s possible an issue. They are three big sides,” he said.
“I just hope we appoint the right manager when they do come to make that decision.
“There are a lot of good managers out there who are looking for work, it’s just whether they would be prepared to come down to the Championship.
“But whoever takes this job has got the basis of a good side, it’s just been a case of conceding too many goals this season.
“They’re certainly capable of scoring goals, which is a good thing.
“And I think they have the players to rectify the problems defensively.
“At the start of the season it was working, then all of a sudden we were conceding two or three at a time.
“Once we do get a lead we need to try to close things up.”
Of the candidates in the frame, Britton likes the idea of an experienced figure like McCarthy, but believes another younger manager could work with the right people around him.
“Graham Alexander would be nice, with someone with a bit more experience to help him along,” he said.
“He would have the respect of the players and the supporters.”
Barnsley boss Keith Hill is believed to have been an early name in the frame, but I understand the Turf Moor board have since gone in a different direction.
Former midfielder Joyce was a target for former club Hull City in November 2011 when Nigel Pearson returned for a second spell in charge at Leicester City, but opted to continue in his role as Manchester United’s reserve team manager.
I understand the 47-year-old, who spent around 18 months at Turf Moor in the 1990s, is still not seeking a move away from Old Trafford.
Davis, meanwhile, admitted he was flattered by the links with a return but admitted he had not spoken with anyone from his old club.
“They are just rumours at the moment, I’ve had no contact with Burnley,” said the popular former defender, who led Crewe to promotion via the League Two play-offs last season, after taking over the reins from Dario Gradi last year and overseeing a 16-game unbeaten run which took them into the top seven.
A surprise contender for the job could yet be Nick Barmby, who left his role as Hull boss in the summer.
Meanwhile, the Clarets have been linked with a loan move for Manchester United youngster Robbie Brady. But while Burnley had monitored the 20-year-old, a formal enquiry has never been made.