Sol Campbell and Michael Jolley linked with Grimsby Town

Jack Kitson by Jack Kitson / 27 February 2018, 12:10

Grimsby Town have stepped up their search for a new manager after opening talks with Sol Campbell, while Michael Jolley has emerged as the new favourite for the post.

Grimsby axed Russell Slade on 11th February after a 12 game winless run which left the club 17th in the table.

The Mariners have since suffered defeats to Cambridge and Exeter under caretaker boss Paul Wilkinson, although the 5/1 shot for the permanent job remains adamant he can get the strugglers back to winning ways.

Last week Grimsby’s majority shareholder John Fenty revealed his surprise that Campbell had not yet applied for the job, telling BBC Radio Humberside:

"I'm surprised we haven't heard from Sol. He said that clubs aren't taking a punt on young managers. We'd have a chat with him.”

But the man who said he has “one of the greatest minds in football” has obviously got wind of Fenty’s comments, as the former England and Arsenal defender is now reportedly in talks with the League Two club, according to the Daily Mail.

In a recent interview with The Telegraph Campbell admitted his frustration at attempting to break into the managerial arena, having been turned away by at least 10 clubs, including one in Kazakhstan.

However, if rumours are to be believed then the 43-year-old could be on the verge of bagging his first job in management.

Campbell, who has also been linked with Oxford, faces stiff competition from AFC Eskilstuna boss Jolley - the 2/1 favourite - who is widely regarded as one of the most innovative young coaches in Europe.

Jolley, who has a degree in economics from Cambridge University, fuelled speculation that he could now be set to switch Scandinavia for Lincolnshire after he tweeted a picture of himself at the Grimsby game.

Jolley has enjoyed a varied coaching career, enjoying different roles at the likes of Burnley, Nottingham Forest, Lincoln City, Crewe, and Falkirk, before venturing into management with Swedish strugglers AFC Eskilstuna last summer.

Despite failing to keep his side in the Swedish top-flight, Jolley won plaudits for his efforts, with the club rock-bottom upon his arrival with four points from 12 games. His tactical approach to a shock win over Malmo gained widespread attention - check it out for yourself in the video below (from The Coaches Voice).

Other names in the betting include Macclesfield Town boss John Askey, former Falkirk manager Gary Holt, and Robbie Stockdale.

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