Martin O’Neill’s appointment as Ireland boss has been put on ice after the FAI handed under-21 coach Noel King the senior job on a caretaker basis for the remaining World Cup fixtures against Germany and Kazakhstan.
King will take charge for the visit to Cologne next month and the final Group C qualifier against Kazakhstan in Dublin as the FAI takes its time on finding a new manager.
A meeting of the association’s Board of Management on Monday rubberstamped King’s caretaker role, with no new appointment likely before November at the earliest.
And the FAI also confirmed after Monday’s meeting that former international Ray Houghton and newly appointed high performance director Ruud Dokter will lead the search for a new boss.
Houghton and Dokter will carry out a comprehensive assessment of the managerial market in an attempt to identify the best man for the job on a permanent basis.
The move comes amid mounting speculation that O’Neill may be offered a return to Premier League management by Norwich or Fulham in the coming weeks.
Support for a return to the job for Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy is also said to be growing within the FAI after Monday’s meeting.
King will hand responsibility for the under-21 team over to his assistant Harry McCue as he takes charge of the senior squad for the first time.
A statement from the FAI said, “The FAI’s Board of Management met this evening to review the work it has been doing on the senior men’s team managerial appointment and to progress the next steps in the appointment process.
“After considering the views of people within the game and taking soundings from its constituent members, the board tonight decided that the next steps should include a comprehensive assessment of the market.
“It was agreed at the meeting that former international Ray Houghton, who was involved in the last managerial appointment process, and Ruud Dokter, the FAI’s newly-appointed high performance director, should carry out this on-going assessment and report for the board.”
The FAI also backed up earlier remarks by chief executive John Delaney that it is in no hurry to replace Trapattoni.
The statement added, “The board of management resolved that it will take the appropriate time to appoint the best person to manage Ireland for the Euro 2016 campaign, which starts in September next year.”
Jackie Kennedy’s granddaughter has uncannily similar looks