Kilmarnock looking for boss with Scottish experience

James Fowler says the new boss has to hit the ground running.

Kilmarnock looking for boss with Scottish experience SNS Group

Kilmarnock are set to look for a new manager who has experience of the Scottish game and can hit the ground running as they battle for Scottish Premiership survival.

Killie announced the departure of Alex Dyer shortly after the team threw away a two-goal lead to lose 3-2 at home to St Johnstone on Saturday.

It was an 11th defeat in 15 league games and left Killie five points off the bottom of the table ahead of Tuesday’s visit of champions Celtic.

Head of football operations James Fowler has been installed as joint caretaker boss along with coach Andy Millen and captain Gary Dicker. Former Killie player Fowler will then advise the three-person board on the way forward.

“Obviously it’s been a whirlwind since Saturday,” Fowler said. “We’ve got a transfer window closing and a game on Tuesday so that’s going to be the main focus for the club.

“We have received CVs basically straight away since the news was out, and that’s the ruthless part of football. We will meet as a board and myself probably later in the week and settle how we are going to go and whittle the CVs down to serious candidates.

“We are looking to get it done as soon as possible but it has to be the right person as well, and we need to go through a proper process.

“I will advise the board and give them my feedback – but ultimately, it will be a board decision.”

When pressed on his thoughts on the criteria, Fowler said: “As a club we want to close the gap between our academy and the first team and get more players through.

“That’s a longer-term strategy but ultimately we want to make sure we stay in this league as well, so whether that impacts on our appointment is something that we will discuss at boardroom level.

“I suppose one of the pre-requisites is they have an understanding of the Scottish league, or the British game certainly.

“There’s not many games left so it’s important they know what they are coming into. They don’t have any bedding-in period like you would maybe get in the summer. It’s important we get someone who can do the job straight away.”

Dyer’s decision was announced by “mutual consent” following talks in the wake of Saturday’s disappointment. Fowler described it as a “really tough” evening at Rugby Park.

“I don’t think anyone has got a bad word to say about the manager,” he said. “He is highly respected, a great guy and a great coach as well.

“It’s tough when someone loses their job but ultimately it was a board decision that they felt they needed to make a change. We wish him well and I’m sure it won’t be long before he is back involved in football.

“It is a results-driven business and ultimately the buck stops at the manager’s door.

“I spoke to the players and said everyone will feel a bit of responsibility.

“It might be a fresh start for some players who didn’t feature under the manager but it’s a close-knit group and the manager had the respect of everyone.

“It is a tough one to see him losing his job but that focus quickly shifts to Tuesday night because we have a game.

“We can’t be feeling sorry for ourselves or anything else. It’s important they show they are a good bunch of players and get a win hopefully.” 

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