BARNSLEY’s search for a new manager took a turn for the worse yesterday when the club’s preferred choice Keith Hill ruled himself out of the running.
The Star understands the two parties were unable to agree on a contract which would see Rochdale boss Hill and his assistant manager David Flitcroft - as well as other coaching staff - make the move to Oakwell.
It also believed there was a stumbling block with the amount of compensation which the Reds would have had to pay to the League One club if Hill did agree to leave Spotland.
As the search goes on former Oakwell favourite Steve Agnew entered the race.
“Barnsley can confirm that Keith Hill is no longer on its shortlist of applicants for the first team managers position,” read a club statement.
“The club continues to interview candidates and does not expect to arrive at a decision on the new manager until next week at the earliest.”
Former Reds’ boss Danny Wilson was asked whether he’d be interested in a return to Barnsley following Mark Robins’ resignation, but The Star understands that he was not interested. He is believed to be a strong contender to replace Micky Adams as the new Sheffield United manager.
Former Blades’ boss Kevin Blackwell and ex-Sheffield Wednesday managers Brian Laws and Alan Irvine have all applied for the Barnsley job, but The Star has discovered none of the trio will get the job for fear of upsetting the fans because of their spells with fellow South Yorkshire clubs.
To make the situation a little more problematic is next Tuesday’s cut-off point for the club’s supporters to renew their season tickets.
With the club announcing that they won’t he appointing a new manager until next week “at the earliest” some fans could be put off renewing but a club insider disagreed: “ We’re working really hard to find a new manager and season tickets sales have been going well.”
The new name in the frame is ex-Reds stalwart Agnew, who played more than 200 games for Barnsley between 1983-1991.
He was caretaker manager of Middlesbrough in October last year following the sacking of Gordon Strachan.
Former Charlton Athletic boss Phil Parkinson and Leyton Orient manager Russell Slade have also applied.