U's refuse permission to speak to Parky

IPSWICH Town have been refused permission to talk to Colchester United boss Phil Parkinson.But the Blues' bid to land Tony Mowbray was boosted when Hibernian granted a move to approach their manager.

By Derek Davis

IPSWICH Town have been refused permission to talk to Colchester United boss Phil Parkinson.

But the Blues' bid to land Tony Mowbray was boosted when Hibernian granted a move to approach their manager.

The EADT revealed last week that Mowbray and Parkinson were the leading contenders for the job vacated by Joe Royle and Ipswich approached their clubs with a view of involving the duo in the interview process.


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The U's board met last night where it is understood Ipswich's request was officially vetoed.

Parkinson still has two years on his current Layer Road contract and while no doubt ambitious to want to manage at a higher level or a perceived bigger club, the U's boss is known to be a loyal person.

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Colchester chairman Peter Heard plucked a relatively unknown coach from Reading's Academy and had that faith repaid when Parkinson led the U's to automatic promotion into the Championship this season.

The U's refusal will come as no surprise after the bad feeling that was caused between the clubs when George Burley left Colchester to join Town and the battle for compensation that followed.

While Ipswich might have lost the opportunity to speak to Parkinson, who has also been linked with Charlton and Derby, they will get the opportunity to speak with former skipper, coach and caretaker manager Mowbray.

The Scottish club last night confirmed they had given permission for Ipswich to speak to last year's SPL Manager of the Year, after Blues chairman David Sheepshanks spoke to his counterpart at the Edinburgh club, Rod Petrie, over the weekend.

The relationship between the two men is excellent after their dealings in allowing Mowbray to join Hibs two years ago and that might help the process.

In an exclusive interview with the EADT last May, Petrie praised Sheepshanks' handling of the move, and this is bound to help in negotiations this time round.

Although Mowbray remains in pole position for the Town job, it is by no means a forgone conclusion that he will take up the post, or that it will be offered.

The SPL side will seek compensation for Mowbray, and assistant Mark Venus, if the former Blues defender joins his current manager at Portman Road.

It is not yet clear whether any new manager will be allowed to bring in his own men, as Willie Donachie, who is also among the candidates for the main job, and Steve McCall, are still contracted to Ipswich Town.

Hibs have already started their hunt for a new manager, with Falkirk's John Hughes and Cowdenbeath's Mixu Paatelainen understood to be among the leading targets.

Sheepshanks and chief executive Derek Bowden were last night in London interviewing a candidate and among those believed to be on the shortlist is former Sunderland and Millwall manager Mick McCarthy.

Brian Kerr, his successor at the Republic of Ireland, who was reported to be another of the contenders, is not among the applicants.

Hull City, who were reported to also be in the hunt for Mowbray, will now call off their challenge after Peter Taylor has confirmed he is staying at the Yorkshire club. Taylor formally withdrew from the running to be the new Charlton manager.

Taylor, the England Uner-21 manager, said: “I had an interview much earlier in the week, but have decided I no longer wish to be considered for it. I am very, very happy at Hull City and very proud of what has been achieved.

“If you get the chance to speak to a very good Premiership club, I think that would interest most people. But I've never been 100% happy leaving Hull City. I'm very happy there and always have been.”

Another of the early front-runners for the Town position, Terry Butcher, chose to join Sydney FC after Ipswich insisted a full interview process was followed.

Canada manager Frank Yallop, Jim Magilton, Billy Davies, Alan Curbishley and Steve Foley are also among those ruled out.

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