Hughton Favourite For West Ham Job

Sean Raymond by Sean Raymond / 17 May 2011, 10:06

Chris Hughton has emerged as the new favourite to become the next West Ham manager following Steve McClaren's decision to withdraw from the running. Victor Chandler have slashed Hughton's odds from 7/1 to 6/4 to make him the leading candidate to take over at the recently relegated club.

In the aftermath of the Avram Grant sacking on Sunday, the former England and Middlesbrough boss Steve McClaren was installed as the odds-on favourite to take over at Upton Park. However, last night McClaren issued a statement saying that he did not wish to be considered for the position. As a result the former Newcastle manager Hughton now heads the list of names to take over from Grant. Importantly Hughton has valuable experience of leading a team from the Championship to the Premier League having guided Newcastle to the top tier in 2010. He is already known at West Ham having played there during his career between 1990-1992, where he made 33 appearances. Hughton has been out of a job since his shock sacking by Newcastle last December and he was previously linked to West Brom and most recently with becoming the next Barnsley manager.

Other names on the shortlist include Malky MacKay, Martin O'Neill and Neil Warnock. With odds of 6/1 Victor Chandler have placed Malky MacKay as the second favourite to become manager of West Ham. The Watford manager played for the Hammers between 1994-1995, making 18 appearances for the club. No doubt the fans favourite would be the charismatic Martin O'Neill, who was linked with the club back in January. O'Neill has the passion and determination that the club's fans desperately want to see displayed on the field itself, but there are doubts as to whether the former Aston Villa manager would want to manage in the Championship. The QPR manager Neil Warnock is available at 9/1 but it would be a surprise if he left QPR, the club he has just guided from the Championship, to join a club going in the opposite direction.

For the time being Kevin Keen will take charge for the Hammers final game of the season at home to Sunderland. Following their 3-2 defeat to Wigan last week this will merely be a game of pride as West Ham bid farewell to the Premier League.

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