Moore in the frame for U's job

COLCHESTER United will officially unveil their new manager tomorrow.Ronnie Moore has emerged as one of the late favourites, while Aidy Boothroyd, Colin Calderwood and Mark Kinsella are also in the running.

Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United will officially unveil their new manager tomorrow.

Ronnie Moore has emerged as one of the late favourites, while Aidy Boothroyd, Colin Calderwood and Mark Kinsella are also in the running.

One thing is for sure - Paul Lambert's successor will be in the stands at Gillingham tonight, watching his future new team in action.

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Ex-Watford boss Boothroyd, and former U's player and current Charlton coach Kinsella, have been in the frame for the last couple of weeks.

But the spotlight has also shifted towards former Tranmere Rovers boss Moore. The 56-year-old was believed to be one of those interviewed at the end of last week.

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Moore parted company with Rovers after three years at the helm this summer, having only missed out on the League One play-offs on the final day of the regular season. Rovers needed to beat Scunthorpe at Glanford Park to finish sixth, but Iron secured a late equaliser and ironically went on to win promotion.

Liverpool-born Moore had previously managed Southport and Rotherham (1997-2005).

U's owner and chairman Robbie Cowling has hosted six interviews over the last few days, after the original list of 12 candidates had been whittled down to a half-dozen.

Five of them are currently not in managerial work, although the sixth is the manager at another club.

It was a busy Bank Holiday weekend of managerial denials, with some strong candidates ruling themselves out of contention, including Paul Buckle, who had been linked with a return to the Essex club, and John Still. Rotherham boss Mark Robins had ruled himself out on Saturday.

Former U's midfielder Buckle, who has been enjoying considerable success as the manager of Torquay - he masterminded their promotion back to the Football League last season - revealed that Colchester had been keen to speak to him, but that he had decided to remain in Devon.

Buckle said: “I want to stay at Torquay United and I have agreed a new contract in principle.

“We had a situation of Colchester United speaking to Torquay United, but the most important thing is that we move forward with fresh ideas.

“I am very happy at Torquay. There was interest from Colchester and the two clubs spoke, but I haven't been for an interview and I will be sorting out a new contract at Plainmoor.”

Meanwhile, Dagenham & Redbridge boss Still dismissed late rumours that he was in line to move across the county from Victoria Road to the Community Stadium.

Still said: “I am very happy at Dagenham & Redbridge, and I am very close to signing a new contract.

“I therefore have no interest in leaving the club and wish that to be known.”

In addition to Moore, Boothroyd and Kinsella, the other names in the mix include the Newcastle United backroom staff duo of Iain Dowie and Calderwood.

Ex-Nottingham Forest manager Calderwood is the joint caretaker manager at St James' Park, alongside Chris Hughton.

Joe Dunne has been the U's caretaker boss ever since Lambert announced his shock resignation to take over the managerial reins at Norwich City a fortnight ago. Dunne will be in charge of his last game at Priestfield this evening..

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