Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Worthington ready for Sheffield Wednesday talks

Nigel Worthington

Nigel Worthington last night revealed he would like to talk to Sheffield Wednesday about becoming the new manager at Hillsborough.

The Northern Ireland boss, who was in Sheffield yesterday for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony, will be out of work in at the end of the month when his contract with the Irish FA comes to an end.

Having spent 11 years with the Owls as a player, Worthington has jumped to the front of the queue to replace Brian Laws, who was sacked yesterday after his side dropped into the relegation zone following a defeat to Leicester City on Saturday. And a Sheffield Wednesday source has indicated Worthington’s name has already been mentioned in the corridors of power at the club.

Worthington’s opening round of talks with the IFA failed to bring any agreement and although there has yet to be an official request to talk from Wednesday, the former Norwich City boss admits it’s a job which does appeal to him.

“Let’s be honest about this, in two weeks time I will be out of work and I have to weigh up my options,” said Worthington.

“I spent 11 great years at Sheffield Wednesday as a player and the club means a lot to me. If the opportunity arose to speak to them, then I would have to listen to what they have to say.

“It would only be fair to myself and my career but at this moment in time there has not been any contact and I am still under contract with the IFA and enjoying working with Northern Ireland.”

One man who could hold the key to any move for Worthington is Howard Wilkinson.

The former Leeds United boss is currently working as a technical advisor at Wednesday and Worthington admits he is the single biggest influence on his career.

He added: “Howard took me to Notts County when I was young, then Sheffield Wednesday, then Leeds and then got me involved with the under-21 set-up when he was involved with England so you could say we are close.”

Worthington was keen to point out negotiations with the IFA are on-going but he was disappointed details of his first round of discussion were leaked last week.

Should he make the tempting move to Hillsborough, Queen’s Park Rangers’ suspended boss Jim Magilton would come into the frame for Northern Ireland, along with Iain Dowie and Shamrock Rovers chief Michael O’Neill.

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