Kevin Keen emerges as favourite to be new Colchester United manager

Kevin Keen, who has emerged as the favourite to be the new manager of Colchester United

Kevin Keen, who has emerged as the favourite to be the new manager of Colchester United - Credit: PA

Former West Ham midfielder Kevin Keen has emerged as a red-hot favourite to be the new manager of Colchester United.

U’s current caretaker boss, Wayne Brown, ruled himself out of contention yesterday, stating that the time was not right for him to take on the role full-time.

Chairman and owner, Robbie Cowling, had been hoping to make an internal appointment, as a successor to former boss Tony Humes, who stood down on November 26.

But with the likes of under-18 coach Brown, former assistant manager Richard Hall and under-21 coach John McGreal all seemingly out of the running, an external appointment now seems likely.

And Keen is the favourite, with short odds of 6-1 ON offered by Bet Victor.

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Amersham-born Keen, aged 48, began his playing career at Wycombe but was best known for his days as a midfielder at West Ham (219 league games between 1983 and 1993), Wolves and Stoke City (176 league appearances between 1994 and 2000).

He ended his playing career at Macclesfield, where he was also a caretaker manager.

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Back at West Ham, as a coach, he was caretaker manager three times, before leaving Upton Park in the summer of 2011.

He has since been a first team coach at Liverpool, and joint assistant head coach at West Brom under Steve Clarke, as well as being an assistant manager to Clarke at Reading.

Clarke was sacked as Reading boss on December 4, with Keen also leaving.

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