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Novo jets in for talks as Glens ramp up the hunt for new boss


By Steven Beacom

Glentoran are approaching the end game in their search for a new manager and hope to make a decision before the weekend, by which time they aim to have interviewed Nacho Novo, Darren Murphy, Steve Lomas and Bob Malcolm.

It is understood that former Rangers star Novo, who played for the Glens last season, was due to fly into Belfast from Scotland last night to talk to the east Belfast club.

Former Dungannon Swifts boss Murphy has already discussed the position with the Glentoran hierarchy, while another ex-Rangers star, Malcolm, is expected to be interviewed before a final decision is reached.

A new name in the frame is one-time Northern Ireland captain Lomas, who has spent most of his career across the water but is considering coming home.

Having sacked Gary Haveron in February and appointed Ronnie McFall to take over on an interim basis, there was much frustration among the Glentoran faithful when earlier this month Rodney McAree and Colin Nixon rebuffed advances to take charge.

McAree opted to stay at Dungannon Swifts, signing a new three-year deal with the Tyrone club, and Nixon, Glentoran's record appearance holder, chose to remain with Ards, who handed him a new three-year contract.

Meanwhile, Stephen McDonnell is relishing the challenge of managing Warrenpoint Town on a permanent basis and moving the club forward after agreeing a three-year contract to stay at Milltown.

The 26-year-old from Dundalk was appointed interim boss in February when Matthew Tipton left to take over at Championship outfit Portadown.

In ensuring Town's top-flight status, McDonnell, who previously had been on Tipton's coaching staff, has done enough to earn himself a long-term deal.

"I have said from day one this is a job I want and a challenge I am up for," said McDonnell, one of the youngest bosses in Europe.

"I have been interim manager for seven games and during that time coupled with my time as coach I have had the opportunity to plan a squad for next season.

"I want to take Warrenpoint Town forward and am relishing the opportunity to do that."

Colm Barron, who like McDonnell was forced to end his playing career early due to injury, will remain as assistant boss.

And Clifford Adams and Championship club Ballyclare Comrades have parted company by mutual consent.

Ballyclare were in the hunt for promotion but have slipped to fifth in the division. In a statement, Comrades said: "We would like to put on record our appreciation for the work put in by Clifford and his dedication."

Ex-Ballyclare boss Jamesie Kirk and former Carrick and Larne boss Graham McConnell are contenders to take over.

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