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Several candidates are attracting attention after Michael O’Neill decided to permanently leave his managerial post with Northern Ireland in April. According to the bookies, Tommy Wright is currently the top favorite at Next Northern Ireland manager odds. However, Ian Baraclough and Stephen Robinson are also among serious contenders.
Online sportsbook news sites in the United Kingdom have reported that the recruitment process has begun. A number of names are in the frame of the next Northern Ireland manager odds. The no longer employed Tommy Wright with St Johnstone is hugely favored. However, the NI Under-21 head coach Ian Baraclough and the experienced Stephen Robinson are also in the mix.
The former Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill has been around for almost a decade. He guided the country to the Euro 2016 finals in France, and he was supposed to stay for the Euro 2020 qualifying play-offs. However, with the postponement of the tournament to 2021, O’Neill decided to concentrate fully on leading Championship side Stoke City. There is no shortage of names for the replacement. But, probably one of the top three favorites will land the job.
Tommy Wright available for the replacement
The former Newcastle United and Northern Ireland goalkeeper Tommy Wright spent seven years with St Johnstone. He was appointed in 2013, lifted the Scottish Cup in 2014, and qualified for Europe three times. His contract was supposed to last until 2022, but he decided to leave St Johnstone.
Recently Tommy wright said to BBC “my CV is quite strong”, openly welcoming the idea of leading the Northern Ireland team. At that time O’Neill was still officially the manager, but Wright preferred to be among the first to throw his hat into the ring. Thus, online sportsbooks in the United Kingdom suggest he is the prime candidate with 8/11 odds at BetVictor.
Ian Baraclough is currently the NI Under-21 manager
No surprise that Ian Baraclough has emerged among the favorites with a value of 11/4 at the next Northern Ireland manager odds. He is the NI Under-21 head coach since 2017. A good run in 2019 Euro Under-21 Championships, qualifying for the group and narrowly missing out on a play-off is among Baraclough’s biggest achievements. Not to mention the shock victories over Spain and Iceland. Besides, Baraclough won A League of Ireland with Sligo Rovers in his first year in charge. Later on, he helped Motherwell ensure their Premiership survival.
Stephen Robinson has plenty of international experience
The 45-year-old Stephen Robinson has been a long-time front-runner to succeed O’Neill. Maybe the time has finally come with 11/4 odds. Robinson has scored some memorable successes and that is why the fans will likely be delighted to welcome him as the next Northern Ireland manager. On top of his successes is leading Motherwell to both the League Cup and Scottish Cup finals in 2017-2018. He has been also among O’Neill’s coaching staff during the Euro 2016 finals in France.
Given his international experience, Robinson is well-known to the IFA. Besides, he holds the advantage over his rivals regarding the ability to forge the manager-player trust. It is a key ingredient to any successful dressing room and given his service a part of O’Neill’s backroom staff, he will likely get along quickly with the players.
If you wish to see all other candidates to replace O’Neill and their best odds, just check out the review about BetVictor.