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Premier League

Curbishley rebuffs Wolves' approach for a second time


Wolverhampton Wanderers continue to be frustrated in their efforts to replace their sacked manager Mick McCarthy, with hopes of securing the services of Alan Curbishley and Brian McDermott having faded. The Midlands club made a second attempt yesterday to lure the initial favourite Curbishley to Molineux and it led to bookmakers reinstating him as a leading candidate.

But the former Charlton and West Ham United manager repeated his reasons for pulling out of the race in the first place – a lack of a shared vision for the future with the club's owner, Steve Morgan. The Reading manager McDermott was also on the radar of Morgan and Wolves' chief executive, Jez Moxey.

McDermott had impressed the duo with the way he has turned the Royals into a promotion-chasing force on limited resources. But the 50-year-old yesterday signed an improved contract at the Madejski Stadium, committing him to the club until the summer of 2015.

The £2m compensation Brighton & Hove Albion would demand for Gus Poyet, who is in the first season of a five-year deal, is a major stumbling block to potential interest in the Uruguayan.

Now Wolves are intending to revert to their original plan of seeking a manager with top-flight experience. It leaves the former Sunderland, Birmingham City and Wigan Athletic manager Steve Bruce, who yesterday relocated in the Birmingham area, as the bookmakers' favourite.

Bruce has become increasingly frustrated at the lack of contact from either Morgan or Moxey since his initial interview last Friday. He has also received a negative reaction from some sections of Wolves' supporters over his possible appointment.

Morgan and Moxey are believed to be talking to other potential candidates and the likes of Blackpool's Ian Holloway and Birmingham's Chris Hughton have been linked with a move.

Attempting to sign up a manager already in work could be a lengthy process and Wolves do not have time on their side as they strive to move out of the Premier League bottom three.

The caretaker manager, Terry Connor, now looks likely to be in charge of Saturday's game at Newcastle and will conduct the pre-match press conference at the club's training ground tomorrow. McCarthy was sacked 10 days ago in a split boardroom vote after five-and-a-half years at Molineux.