Sheffield Wednesday: Gray in charge for next match

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Milan Mandaric has told The Star that he plans to keep Stuart Gray in charge for the Owls’ match at Watford on Saturday.

Roy Keane and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink at the weekend became the latest be linked with the manager’s job.

Owls caretaker manager Stuart Gray will keep charge for the match at Watford

Owls caretaker manager Stuart Gray will keep charge for the match at Watford

But the Wednesday chairman says he was misrepresented in a newspaper article that claimed he had set his sights on Keane and that he was going to ask the Irish FA for permission to speak to the Republic of Ireland assistant manager.

“There is a lot of speculation going on,” Mandaric told The Star. “I’m not going after any name at the moment. I was asked about Roy Keane. I said he was not my list, and he is working for the Irish Federation. I have never had any discussions with him.”

Even if the Owls had targeted Keane it seems unlikely that he would leave the Republic job only a month after being appointed by manager Martin O’Neill.

Mandaric said before the Forest game that the shortlist included two or three managers who were in work plus two who were working “outside the country.”

The chairman has denied making an approach for Doncaster’s Paul Dickov, who was linked with the job but said he knew nothing of any Wednesday interest.

Mandaric is reluctant to divulge names while he analyses different options - Gray among them - and is happy to let the caretaker boss take the team in the meantime.

“Stuart will be there (at Watford),” Mandaric said after the 1-0 defeat by Forest. “There’s no need to panic, and it gives us more time.

“I am pleased with the effort that Stuart and the players are putting in, but obviously disappointed with the result.

“There was not much difference between the teams. We took the game to Forest and played some nice football but unfortunately the result didn’t go for us.”

Gray was told by Mandaric before the game that the plan was for him to stay in charge at Watford. The caretaker boss said on Saturday he would need to find out whether the defeat made any difference.

Hasselbaink manages Royal Antwerp in the Belgian Second Division and before that was a coach at Forest but lacks Championship managerial experience.

Keane took Sunderland from the Championship relegation zone to the Premier League and resigned when they were struggling in their second season in the top flight.

He was appointed at Ipswich in 2009 but was sacked 20 months later when they were 19th in the Championship.

Gray has revealed the full extent of recent injury problems: Lewis Buxton (groin tear) will be out for another month and Michail Antonio (knee) and Giles Coke (hamstring) at least two weeks.