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UPDATE: Completing the process

17 September 2014

Managing director John Nixon with an update on the appointment process

Managing director John Nixon gave us an update on the managerial appointment process as the first round of interviews draw to a close.

“I think we’ve said before, this is a dynamic situation and it changes almost by the hour,” he said. “In fact, I returned to the office this afternoon to find another batch of applications which took the number of interested parties to over 80 in total.

“We made a decision over the weekend that, where we were talking to people currently in employment, we wouldn’t progress with those talks on Monday or Tuesday because there was a full Football League fixture list. 

“Out of respect to the clubs concerned we had to allow their game preparation to go ahead as normal, so we have picked up where we left off this morning.”

“Obviously there has been a lot of speculation in the local press about Neil McDonald, and I think it’s only fair to say that he has formally withdrawn his name from the process and we respect that decision totally.

“That has made a difference to the short list because he was a strong candidate, as far as we were concerned. He’s given it a great deal of thought over the last five to ten days and he has spoken to us about the situation today. He has told us that he has discussed it with his family, having thought about it long and hard, and he has decided that it isn’t the right career move for him to make at this point in time.”

“I’m still confident that our short list has some extremely strong candidates and we will now go on to meet some of them for a second time,” he said. “The aim will be to get a firm answer in the next 24 to 48 hours. I’d like to think there will be an indication, at the very least, in that period of time. 

“In the mean time Tony Caig and Paul Thirlwell, who have been getting some real help from Alan Moore, have identified areas of the team where they feel they need to strengthen. We’ll try to help them with that if we possibly can. Our prospective new managers have been kept informed of that so they know what’s going on. 

“The current staff have been doing a fantastic job for us in difficult circumstances and they are the same as everyone else in that they want the best results for Carlisle United.”

“A process like this is always going to take time because some of the people we are talking to are currently in work within the game,” he explained. “We’re looking for experience and a proven record, as we’ve also said before, so we have to make sure we’ve identified the right person and then, in some cases, there’s a possibility of having to look for club release. 

“With that in mind, getting a manager into the dug out on Saturday isn’t an absolute given for us. If we go for someone who isn’t currently employed, then that’s a different situation entirely.
 
“The plan now is to complete the final interview process and to make our announcement as soon as the decision has been made and all relevant parties have been notified.”

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