Belfast Telegraph

Coleraine are on alert as Oran ponders next move

Oran Kearney
Oran Kearney

By Graham Luney

Oran Kearney's future at St Mirren hangs in the balance, potentially opening the door to a surprise return to Coleraine.

The Bannsiders are awaiting an update on Kearney's future with the Saints following reports of a breakdown in his relationship with chairman Gordon Scott. Coleraine are searching for a successor to Rodney McAree and any opportunity to bring Kearney back to the Showgrounds will be explored.

As the 40-year-old started planning ahead at the Buddies after securing the club's Scottish Premiership status last season, the Bannsiders began looking elsewhere for a manager and Dundalk refused them permission to speak to assistant boss Ruaidhri Higgins.

Kearney, who led Coleraine to Irish Cup glory and a league runners-up spot in 2017-18, has a further two years left on his contract to run but it's understood the Buddies want him to be permanently based in Scotland. The former Linfield midfielder makes regular trips back home to see his family and Scott, who has a 51% stake in the club, would like to end that constant travelling.

Scott said recently: "I think he has settled to a degree. He wants to continue commuting back and forward occasionally back home.

"It's hard for him. He's got a wonderful family and a wonderful life back home. I would like to think he's settled now and in the long term would move over here."

The fans' favourite at the Buddies would be given a warm welcome back at Coleraine where the current backroom staff continue preparations for the new season.

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Coleraine have been without a manager since McAree left six weeks ago.

A Bannsiders statement read: "We have asked our present backroom staff to continue with the preparations for the new season as we actively consider a number of others for the position".

Belfast Telegraph


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