DAVE Jones is set to be named as the new manager of Sheffield Wednesday today.
The ex-Cardiff boss is understood to have landed the job, though Paul Ince yesterday confirmed an interest in it.
Bookmakers’ odds against Jones becoming Gary Megson’s successor plummeted to only 1-8 against, then firms stopped taking bets - usually a surefire sign that an appointment is imminent.
And football insiders overwhelmingly expect official confirmation today.
Assistant manager Chris Evans and coach Neil Thompson were yesterday placed in temporary charge.
Ince, aged 44, is believed to have been on Milan Mandaric’s radar. But the more experienced Jones, 55, has a track record that will have attracted the Owls.
The Liverpudlian took Stockport to what is now the Championship in 1997 and to the League Cup semi-finals; he led Wolves to two successive second-tier play-offs and went up to the Premier League in 2003 with a win against Sheffield United in the final.
His CV at Cardiff includes the FA Cup Final in 2008, a narrow failure to reach the Championship play-offs when the Bluebirds lost at Hillsborough in their final game of the season, and two successive play-off tournaments after that. He left Cardiff last May.
Jones has so far refused to comment but it is likely that there will be a press conference at Hillsborough today.
Ince. who won a promotion with MK Dons, told The Star: “Sheffield Wednesday are a fantastic club with fantastic fans. I remember going there with Notts County and we won 1-0, which was a great result for us - there was a real buzz around the stadium.
“I don’t think there would be many managers who wouldn’t want to manage a fantastic club like Sheffield Wednesday.
“I’m looking forward to getting back in the game. If the right opportunity comes along, I’m always happy to talk to whoever wants to use my services.”
The former England and Manchester United star added: “Milan Mandaric will have his thoughts (about the appointment).
“I just hope they get the right man. If Milan had wanted to sit down and talk to me, of course I’d like to talk to him.”
Mick McCarthy, who is among other available managers, is taking a break in Florida and could be looking for a post higher than League One when he is ready to return to the game, having managed in the Premier League until his sacking at Wolves.
Megson has said that one day he would like to manage the Owls again.