Now that Lee Clark has brought half of the Newcastle youth team to Ayrshire, he has left for Bury. With that, who is in the running to fill the vacant managerial position at Killie?
The favourite would appear to be Lee McCulloch. Most decisions by the board are money-based; and with no sort of compensation needed to be paid to another club, he would be appealing for that reason alone. He was interim manager when Gary Locke departed and took the reigns once more for the 2-1 defeat against Aberdeen at the weekend.
Jig has been assistant manager to Clarke for the season and so can probably keep track of the now sprawling squad and will therefore know the players best. That is all relative though, due to the revolving door transfer policy Lee Clark implemented- which means Clark himself probably didn’t have much depth of knowledge of the players in front of him.
To say he was a combative player is an understatement; and that could translate to a “strong” managerial style. He likely wouldn’t hesitate to give the players a rocket should they need it. However, it is the more cerebral part of management that may not come so naturally. A fiery, inexperienced man at the helm could lead to total instability on the pitch and in the dressing room.
Gus Macpherson was a fan favourite as a player and has experience managing up and down the Scottish leagues.
He gained promotion to the top flight with a St.Mirren team that proved to be playing above themselves under MacPherson- his successors having a rough time scrapping for survival until their inevitable relegation.
He currently seems to be orchestrating something similar at Queen’s Park. Achieving promotion to League 1 with the country’s only fully amateur team is not something to be ignored. Yes, the SPFL is an altogether different level but it is one that Gus has both played and managed in.
His time away from managing at the top level and his relegation with Queen of the South are his demerits.
Scottish Cup hero, Gary Holt, is now available as he is no longer a coach at Norwich City.
To date, Holt’s only managerial role has been his 14 month stint at Falkirk while in the Scottish First Division. This may be scant experience but with a win percentage approaching 50% during his time there, he is due credit.
The fans would likely give Holt their backing from the outset given his history as a loyal player for the club. It would then be up to the Ayrshireman to keep them happy. His time as manager at Falkirk and as a coach at Norwich imply he is well tuned in to the managerial mindset and is merely waiting for a suitable opportunity.
These three ex-players are all in the frame for the job and the board are unlikely to surprise us with a left-field candidate. Will the board look beyond McCulloch on their doorstep? MacPherson’s attacking style of play could prove popular. Local boy, Holt could instil the cup-winning mentality into the team.
Whoever lands the job has discontent fans to win round, a notoriously intractable boardroom and a survival struggle on their hands. Good Luck.