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Who Will Succeed Stephen Kenny As Next Ireland Manager?



Last Updated: 20 Nov 2023
Who Will Succeed Stephen Kenny As Next Ireland Manager?

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On the back of a terrible Euro 2024 qualifying campaign, UK betting sites believe the Republic of Ireland may soon be looking for a new manager.

Ireland were dealt a tough hand by being drawn in the same section as three former European champions in France, Greece and the Netherlands, but many supporters would still have expected them to make a better fist of Group B.

Ireland only managed to get six points (all gained against Gibraltar) to their name out of a possible 24, leaving them with a finishing position of second-last in the group.

As a result, Kenny faces the chop after three years in charge of the senior national team. 

The former Dundalk head coach failed to get the desired results and his days are surely numbered.

Who will the FAI turn to as his replacement? Let’s take a look at some of the contenders and the latest betting odds.

Next Ireland Manager Odds

Lennon Now Clear Favourite For The Job

Neil Lennon is a passionate and seasoned football manager hailing from Armagh, known for his fiery determination and tactical astuteness. 

His illustrious career spans both playing and managerial roles, notably spending significant time at Celtic FC as a player and later returning as a successful manager. 

Lennon’s leadership qualities and unwavering commitment to his teams have made him a revered figure in the football world, admired for his ability to motivate players and extract the best from them on the pitch.

Appointing Lennon, who is priced at 2/1, would indicate a return to a more pragmatic approach. 

Carsley On The Shortlist After England Success 

Born in Birmingham, Lee Carsley qualified for the Republic of Ireland through his grandmother and represented the country during his international career. 

The midfielder made 40 appearances in all, one of which came at the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea. 

Carsley is currently in charge of the England Under-21s, whom he led to European Championship glory this summer. 

He is the 5/1 joint second-favourite with BoyleSports to replace Kenny, with recent media reports suggesting he may be the man that the FAI want. 

However, with Gareth Southgate rumoured to stepping down as England boss after Euro 2024, Carsley may be eyeing the top job with the nation of his birth. 

Bruce On The Drift

Steve Bruce has drifted from 9/4 to 5/1 for the Ireland manager job with some new betting sites.

With a long and storied career in football management, including successful stints in the Premier League with clubs like Birmingham City and Hull City, Bruce brings a wealth of experience to the table. 

His tactical acumen and ability to get the best out of his players have been evident throughout his career, making him a compelling choice to lead the Irish national team.

Furthermore, Bruce’s strong track record of working with young talent aligns well with Ireland’s focus on developing their next generation of football stars. 

Steve’s emphasis on building a cohesive team and instilling a winning mentality could provide the boost the Irish team needs to compete at the highest level. 

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Former Stars Keane And Duff Could Be Dark Horses 

Roy Keane has never ruled out a return to management, but the former Ireland captain also acknowledges that he may not get another chance. 

Undoubtedly a world-class player in his day, there are doubts over Keane’s temperament when it comes to management. 

He has not been a head coach for 12 years now, so this one seems unlikely – odds of 16/1 are certainly not attractive enough for a punt. 

Damien Duff at 20/1 is another outsider, although he probably has a better chance of getting the job than his former team-mate. 

Duff has shown promise as manager of Shelbourne and he would instantly command the respect of the Irish dressing room. 

Wilder And Petkovic Both Outsiders

Chris Wilder is currently out of work after leaving Watford in May. He did a fantastic job at hometown club Sheffield United, but things did not go entirely to plan at Middlesbrough or with the Hornets.

Wilder would still be an interesting pick, though, and football betting sites rate his chances at 20/1

The key question is whether he would be willing to bid farewell to club football, at least for now. 

Vladimir Petkovic, available at 33/1, might have less qualms about that given his seven-year spell as Switzerland boss. He too is out of work at present, potentially making an approach easier.  

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Barry And Potter Unlikely At This Stage

There is no doubt that Anthony Barry has coaching acumen. He has worked as an assistant manager for Chelsea, Belgium, Portugal, Bayern Munich – and Ireland, replacing Damien Duff as a member of Kenny’s staff in February 2021. 

He only spent a year with Ireland but would no doubt be open to a return if he were offered a promotion. However, Barry is still only 37 and is therefore an outsider at 25/1 with betting apps.

Available at a bigger price of 66/1 is Graham Potter, who recently turned down an approach from Lyon. 

The ex-Chelsea manager is biding his time as he waits for the right opportunity, which will probably be in the club game. 

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