Walsall old-boys lead the running for Banks's Stadium hot-seat

By Joseph Masi | Walsall FC | Published:

Club favourites Adi Viveash and Dean Keates have been installed as favourites to be the next Walsall boss following the sacking of Jon Whitney.

Adrian Viveash is one of the favourites to take over at Walsall

Whitney, who had been in charge of the Saddlers for two years, was relieved of his duties yesterday afternoon following crunch talks with the club's board.

It is understood poor results as well as the 47-year-old's turbulent relationship with supporters were the reasons behind his sacking.

Whitney's departure was greeted with widespread positivity on social media last night.

A poll on the Express & Star website also showed around 90 per cent of fans agreed with the sacking.

With Whitney gone, thoughts immediately turned to who will replace the former Hull and Lincoln defender in the Saddlers hot seat.

Former defender Viveash, who played more than 200 games for Walsall between 1995 and 2000, is leading the betting with bookmakers.

The 48-year-old is currently working as assistant manager at Coventry where he is helping out boss Mark Robins while his number two Steve Taylor recovers from a brain hemorrhage.


It is Viveash's record while a youth coach at Chelsea though that may entice him to the Saddlers board.

The coach took Chelsea's under-18s to three consecutive FA Youth Cup finals, triumphing in 2012 and 2014.

He also won the UEFA Youth League in 2015 and successfully defended it the following year.

Keates meanwhile is also a name high on supporters' wish lists following the impressive job he has done at Wrexham.


The former midfielder enjoyed two stints with the Saddlers as a player, amassing over 200 games in the process.

But he is now masterminding a promotion charge at the Dragon's with the Welsh side currently sitting fourth in the National League.

Outside the two former Walsall captains, Brian McDermott is third favourite with bookmakers.

The former Leeds and Reading manager is currently out of work and has previously managed Slough Town and Woking.

Other managers being linked to the vacancy include recently sacked Blues boss Steve Cotterill, former Rotherham manager Alan Stubbs and ex-Manchester United great Paul Ince.

Walsall though are believed to want to take their time over the appointment with assistant coach Ian Sharps and development manager John Ward currently in charge of first-team affairs.

Despite Ward having vast managerial experience having been in charge of Bristol Rovers, Cheltenham and Colchester, it is understood he is not interested in the role full-time.

Joseph Masi

By Joseph Masi
Football MMPJ - @josephmasi_star

Football journalist for the Express & Star covering Walsall FC.


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