Who's next on Canaries merry-go-round

Chris Lakey The search has begun for Norwich City's fifth manager in just three seasons.All the usual suspects are being mentioned in despatches, but the presence of Canaries chief executive and director David McNally in the recruitment process has added a new dimension to the speculation over who takes over from Bryan Gunn - who was sacked yesterday just two games into the new season.

Chris Lakey

The search has begun for Norwich City's fifth manager in just three seasons.

All the usual suspects are being mentioned in despatches, but the presence of Canaries chief executive and director David McNally in the recruitment process has added a new dimension to the speculation over who takes over from Bryan Gunn - who was sacked yesterday just two games into the new season.

Gordon Strachan's name has featured heavily, perhaps because of McNally's links with Celtic, where he was head of sales and marketing, while Lawrie Sanchez has also been spoken of - even though McNally sacked him when he was managing director of Premier League Fulham.


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One name that has appeared at regular intervals in recent years and which will find favour with large sections of City's support is that of Adrian Boothroyd, the former youth coach who is out of work after leaving Watford last November.

The EDP understands that Boothroyd would have taken the job in January, when Gunn was appointed after Glenn Roeder's dismissal. Gunn's initial contract was to the end of the season - but Boothroyd wanted longer.

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Boothroyd has links with the club, he has a good standing in the game and he would not be prohibitively expense.

The City board will have made inroads into the managerial process already, given that there are four games within a space of 10 days, beginning at Exeter today.

Assistant manager Ian Butterworth will be in charge at St James Park, but his future, and that of coach Ian Crook, could be in doubt: they were brought in as a part of an old boys' dream team in January and may be guilty by association with Gunn.

Butterworth could throw his hat into the ring, while Crook admitted when he arrived that he had already applied for the vacancy, possibly in partnership with his former manager in Australia, Pierre Littbarski.

There's unlikely to be a shortage of applications, some of which will already be in McNally's in-tray - but it is likely that McNally himself began the process of replacing Gunn before yesterday's decision was made public.

The likes of Alan Curbishley, Steve Coppell and Glenn Hoddle are out of work and have featured heavily in past speculation, but City's drop into League One and the “dire” financial situation which McNally admitted existed at Carrow Road, has changed all that.

Instead, City will be linked again with Rotherham's Mark Robins, a former striker at Norwich, Southend's Steve Tilson and Iain Dowie, whose last job was helping Alan Shearer at Newcastle.

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