Barnsley FC next manager: Candidates to replace Valerien Ismael

The shortlist of candidates to replace Valerien Ismael as Barnsley coach will be a lot shorter than the one he emerged from in October.

New West Bromwich Albion manager Ismael and his Barnsley predecessor Gerhard Struber were largely unknown quantities when they arrived at Oakwell after stints in Austrian football.

Before them, Daniel Stendel's only senior management experience had been just under a year with Hannover 96. But the Reds recognised coaching skills largely shown at youth and feeder-club level and made great use of them.

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Barnsley have been exceptional at targeting coaches who fit their high-tempo gegenpressing style and whilst many clubs zig-zag from one approach to another in search of a winning formula, it seems inconceivable Ismael's successor will not fit the same blueprint.

This year new post-Brexit rules have come into place which would have stopped all three getting work permits to manage in England, however.

They would also be a barrier to the likes of Marcel Rapp, who turned the job down before Ismael was offered it, Alexander Zorniger, interviewed then, Achim Beierlorzer and Markus Schopp as they have not worked for two consecutive years or three of the last five in one of the world's top leagues.

Clubs can argue for an exception but with the regulations relatively new, no one has yet done so successfully.

Oliver Glasner and Adi Hutter, two products of the highly-regarded Red Bull network Struber was (and now is again) part of, have just taken new jobs in Germany's Bundesliga, and former Huddersfield Town manager David Wagner joined Young Boys despite West Brom interest.

POTENTIAL CANDIDATE: Darren Moore. Picture: Getty Images.

So who might come into their thinking?


Interviewed for the job the last two times it came up after steadying spells as caretaker manager, the 39-year-old instead worked under the men who beat him to it and will have learnt much from them.

Well thought-of within the club, Murray would be a continuity candidate at a club only changing coach reluctantly and the idea of him getting third time lucky cannot be discounted.

POTENTIAL CANDIDATE: Ryan Mason. Picture: Getty Images.


A free agent having resisted Granada's attempt to continue his hugely-successful three years there which started in division two but has since seen consecutive top-half La Liga finishes, a Copa del Rey semi-final and a Europa League quarter-final.

Certainly good enough, the biggest issue might be that the secret is out on the 40-year-old Spaniard.


POTENTIAL CANDIDATE: Adam Murray. Picture: Getty Images.

Mentioned before, Wolf would not tick the work permit boxes but has a CV which could be worth fighting for an exception.

Stuttgart and Hamburg were big German second division sides when he managed them, taking the former to promotion. He also has three youth-team titles at Borussia Dortmund.

The 39-year-old has since managed Genk in the Champions League, Germany's under-18s, and was Bayer Leverkusen's caretaker for the final two months of last season.

“He stands for the kind of football we want to play at Bayer 04: intense, attacking, aggressive, attractive and, of course, successful,” said Leverkusen sporting director Simon Rolfes.


Being made caretaker manager of Tottenham Hotspur before he turned 30 (he has since) highlighted the regard former Hull City midfielder Mason is held in, having also worked in the England youth set-ups since a fractured skull forced his premature retirement.

Quite where he stands at White Hart Lane, where approximately 237 other candidates appear to have been targeted for the vacant manager's job, is unclear but having had tasted senior management he may want more, especially if the new man at Spurs does not see him as an important part of the plans.


Even though he is a former Reds captain, Moore is an outside bet, having been overlooked for the post before. He not long ago joined relegation-threatened Sheffield Wednesday and made it clear as soon as they dropped into League One he wanted to bring them back up.

There are, though, serious problems behind the scenes at Hillsborough, where players are far too often not being paid in full and on time, bringing with it a transfer embargo, and if Moore were to decide the situation was that much worse than he thought, his style of football, Championship experience and links to the club would tick a lot of boxes.

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