Former West Brom and Northern Ireland international Gareth McAuley has tipped Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson to be the next Northern Ireland manager.
The IFA are currently looking for Michael O’Neill’s permanent replacement for when the new Stoke City manager leaves the national team following the Euro 2020 play-offs.
The ex-Baggies man believes Robinson should be the man the IFA target.
As quoted by the Belfast Telegraph, he said: “There are a few names being bandied about. For me personally, the one is Stephen Robinson at Motherwell.
“I think it keeps the continuity, he knows the players that are coming through, he’s worked with them in the under-age groups. He knows the players in the senior squad, he’s worked with them under Michael. He was at the Euros with us. The lads have a lot of respect for him.
“I just think it would be foolish if they didn’t at least approach him and make contact, even if they feel Michael should carry on. What’s being done at Motherwell is being noticed and it wouldn’t surprise me if another club comes in.”
Robinson has stated his Northern Ireland ambitions before
Robinson’s been brilliant for the Well. A rocky patch during the first half of last season aside, Motherwell have enjoyed a real bright spell under his tenure that has resulted in two cup finals and a host of young talent breaking through the ranks.
Motherwell will be desperate to keep him, but Robinson has made no secret about his Northern Ireland ambitions in the past, although he isn’t sure about following up from O’Neill.
He told the BBC in October: “I want to coach at the highest level and that’s no secret. Ultimately, I would like to manage my country. I’d maybe let someone else follow Michael, because following that job might be quite a hard one.”
Robinson has been a great servant for the Well but it would be interesting to see if the lure of his nation would prove too much for him to turn down.