The current manager of Colchester United, John McGreal, is the bookies’ favourite to take over as the boss of Tranmere Rovers.
Tranmere are currently looking for a new manager Micky Mellon left the club to take a job at Scottish Premiership side Dundee United, with a four-year deal. Rovers received £120,000 in compensation for the loss of Mellon. McGreal, who comes from Birkenhead, is being strongly linked with the job at Prenton Park, where he played over 200 times between 1990 and 1999.
McGreal’s star is on the rise in managerial circles. In the recently completed 2019-20 season, he led Colchester to the League Two play-offs and the League Cup quarter-finals, a position they had reached only once before in their history.
Given his links to the club and experience of League Two, bookmakers are going heavily on the Colchester boss, with Sky Bet making him as short as Evens to get the job. Other names in consideration are the former Liverpool and England star Robbie Fowler, former Southampton boss Nigel Adkins and the Tranmere assistant manager, Michael Jackson.
But McGreal, 48, is the firm favourite, and remains a popular figure at Tranmere. He was born just a few miles from the ground, and his football career began at the club, followed by almost a decade playing in the first team under managers John Aldridge and John King. He also learned from one of the lower leagues’ leading youth coaches, Warwick Rimmer, who headed up the successful youth set up at the club for over 20 years, producing the likes of Jason Koumas and Alan Rogers.
McGreal has been in post at Colchester for a little over four years, and has presided over more than 200 matches in that time, having originally succeeded Kevin Keen in the job back in May 2016, though he had been working at the Colchester academy prior to getting the top boss. He also served as under-21 head coach, before following the likes of Tony Humes and Joe Dunne in taking the step up from coaching at the club to take the head coach role.
Tranmere were relegated from League One at the end of the 2019-20 season, though were only three points short of safety with a game in hand when the season was curtailed. They had previously earned back to back promotions under Mellon’s leadership.