Chris Coleman emerges as strong contender for Ireland job as Lee Carsley stalls

Coleman led Wales to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 as has emerged as an option with the FAI unable to strike a deal with Carsley

Miguel Delaney
Chief Football Writer
Sunday 18 February 2024 19:18 GMT
Chris Coleman is a contender for the Ireland vacancy
Chris Coleman is a contender for the Ireland vacancy (Getty Images)

Former Wales manager Chris Coleman is now considered a strong candidate for the Republic of Ireland senior men’s job, as the country’s federation attempts to secure a permanent appointment before next month’s international break.

England’s Under-21 coach Lee Carsley has long been the favoured choice, and seen as an ideal option, but the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has been unable to strike a deal with the former Ireland midfielder.

The Independent understands that option isn’t completely closed off but it would at this point take a lot for Carsley to be persuaded.

That has seen Ireland explore other options, and Coleman has emerged both from his history of success with Wales and an Irish connection through his father, who was from Dublin.

Coleman has also spoken of potentially managing the Irish team in the past.

He significantly overachieved in taking Wales to the semi-final of Euro 2016, although this was with a world-class player like Gareth Bale at his peak.

Such an appointment would appear to go against the FAI’s ideal for the next appointment to be an on-pitch progressive coach, given Coleman is seen as more old-fashioned.

Coleman, who managed Sunderland after leaving Wales in 2017, had his last coaching spell with Greek side Atromitos, which ended in October 2023.

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