Warren Feeney set for a rescue act at Ards despite premature announcement
Former Linfield manager Warren Feeney will make a shock Irish League return tomorrow when he officially signs a contract to become the new boss of Premiership basement side Ards.
Having missed out on the Cliftonville job to Paddy McLaughlin two weeks ago, Feeney held weekend discussions with Ards chairman Brian Adams and has accepted an offer in principle to replace Colin Nixon, who was sacked following Friday night's 3-0 defeat to Institute, which left the north Down side three points adrift at the bottom of the table.
The Belfast Telegraph understands that, late last night, the terms of his contract were still being agreed and Ards may have been premature in confirming his appointment on social media with club chairman Adams saying: "We are delighted that Warren has agreed to take over until the end of the season. Warren is a man of great experience who will bring a positive attitude to our club."
Feeney is expected to fly in tomorrow to sign a deal until the end of the season. It is understood the 46-times capped former Northern Ireland striker has been chosen ahead of former Glentoran supremo Gary Haveron and vastly experienced Kenny Shiels.
Feeney has only nine league games left to secure Ards' top-flight status - a massive task as the club have only won three out of 29 league games this season.
After succeeding the hugely successful David Jeffrey at Linfield, Feeney subsequently moved on to become Newport County's assistant boss in October 2015, bringing the curtain down on his 18-month spell at Windsor Park with the Blues top of the table.
Feeney, who is in the process of moving his family back to Northern Ireland, will be plunged straight into a crucial relegation battle against Newry City on Saturday. Ards are currently three points behind the County Down side at the foot of the Danske Bank Premiership table, having played a game more.