“I certainly won’t be rushing into it” – Colchester United chairman Robbie Cowling

U's chairman Robbie Cowling

U's chairman Robbie Cowling

Wayne Brown, the man who helped to mastermind Colchester United’s potentially once-in-a-lifetime promotion to the Championship, was installed as the caretaker manager of the League One club on Thursday.

Ex-skipper and centre-half Brown, who has been cutting his teeth in the U’s Academy, where he has been coaching the under-18s, will be in charge for this Sunday’s FA Cup second round home tie against non-league Altrincham.

Brown had emerged as a surprise favourite, with the bookmakers, to be appointed the new Colchester boss when his odds were slashed on Tuesday evening.

And the 38-year-old has duly been placed on the U’s hot-seat, although only on a caretaker basis, with John McGreal as his assistant, for this weekend’s fixture and almost certainly the following weekend’s key home league match against fellow strugglers Barnsley.

However, it could well be that chairman, Robbie Cowling, decides to bring in a new manager from outside the club, over the course of this month, despite initially saying that he intended to recruit from within.

“I do not feel we are in the right position to make the decision yet,” explained Cowling.

“I’ve got to get the right blend at the top, so I am considering my options. It’s not just about the first team, it’s about the under-21s and the under-18s as well.”

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With regards the possibility of making an external appointment, as a successor to former boss Tony Humes, who stood down last Thursday, Cowling said: “I don’t want to say too much about that.

“Wayne (Brown) will take over straight away, and obviously it would do him no harm if the team went on to win the next couple of games.

“I’m not really looking any further than the next two games, but it could well take longer than those two games (to make a permanent appointment).

“Whoever takes over will have to deal with the recruitment and the budget, and obviously Wayne can’t be expected to do that in just two games.

“I certainly won’t be rushing into it –it’s got to be the right decision.

“It’s a big decision to make and I have given myself more time.

“I have got to get the right blend for the (managerial) team, and I don’t feel that we’ve got that quite right at the moment,” added Cowling.

The U’s are currently languishing just one place and one point above the relegation zone, following last Saturday’s heavy defeat at Burton.

And following this Sunday’s visit of National League club Altrincham in the FA Cup, the U’s face a big relegation battle against bottom club Barnsley the following Saturday, again at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

Brown will be in charge for both of these fixtures, with McGreal, a fellow former Ipswich Town centre-half, also in the dug-out.

Hall, who conducted the post-match press conference at the Pirelli Stadium, as joint interim manager, is still at the club, although he could well revert to his former duties with the Academy before he became Humes’ assistant 15 months ago.

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