Ipswich are close to hiring Manchester United first-team coach Kieran McKenna as their coach and could be appointed in time for their match with Sunderland on Saturday.
League One have been looking to replace Paul Cook since his dismissal on 4 December and settled on the highly-rated McKenna, the 35-year-old who was a member of United’s coaching staff under Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. He continued to work alongside Ralph Rangnick after Solskjaer’s departure, but would move to Portman Road after he had the opportunity to take on a senior management role.
McKenna will be the first appointment to be set by Ipswich owner, Gamechanger 20, who took charge in April and dedicated significant resources to assembling the team that was expected to win the promotion from League One. It didn’t work out that way and the team occupies 12th place, as they lost to Barrow of the second league team in the replay of the FA Cup second round on Wednesday night. McKenna’s first job will be to close a nine-point gap to the playoffs although he will be seen as a long-term recruit, potentially occupying a position closer to head coach.
McKenna, who coached Tottenham under-18s before joining United in a similar role five years ago and quickly climbed into the first-team squad, is likely to be assisted by another current Old Trafford coach, Martin Burt.