Aston Villa are hoping it will be third time lucky as their hunt for a manager to bring back European football gathers pace.
For the third summer running, owner Randy Lerner and chief executive Paul Faulkner are scouring the globe for a new boss after Alex McLeish was sacked on Monday.
The Scot’s ill-fated spell followed on from Gerard Houllier’s unsuccessful reign in the Villa Park hot seat leaving the Villa heirachy under intense pressure to make the right appointment this time around.
Roberto Martinez, Paul Lambert and Brendan Rodgers, inset, are all being considered while Mick McCarthy is the surprise bookies’ favourite and is believed to have had contact with Faulkner.
Outlining his intentions to get the right man in for the job, the CEO said: “I think we want to find someone who can reinvigorate the club, someone who can bring some vibrancy back to Villa.
“That’s what we need and that’s what we can get.
“You want someone who can inspire the players, inspire the fans and can deliver on the pitch.
“I think there are an awful lot of reasons you would want to come to Aston Villa. You look at the size of the club and you look at the infrastructure that we have here.
“The facility at the training ground is one of the best in the country and our academy is one of the best in the country, our stadium is one of the best in the country. We have a fantastic owner who loves the club and has supported his managers, there’s the club’s history, the fans are phenomenal, why would you not want to come here?
“That’s what Villa is, it’s a great club. Now, the past two years the first team has struggled but Aston Villa as a club is very strong.
“The 2011/12 season is gone, obviously the decision has been made with Alex and for us now it’s all about the future.
“It’s about the new manager, it’s about next season, it’s about bouncing back and getting Villa back where we should be, where we feel we should be.”
The appointment will not be rushed, but equally Villa would prefer the new man in place by early June with an extensive overhaul of the playing staff required during the close season.
McLeish said his goodbyes to the players on Monday and looked ‘gutted’ to be leaving according to record-signing Darren Bent.
The England striker fully understands the fans’ fury at Villa’s disappointing season but also had sympathy for the unpopular Scot.
“I spoke to him on Monday and you could tell from his face he was gutted, as you would expect him to be,” he said.
“I only had a few words with him, but I could see his disappointment and I just wished him all the best for the future.
“He felt he could have turned it around next season, but it wasn’t to be.
“Whenever a manager leaves you are always a bit surprised and I thought he would get another year if I’m honest.
“Considering the players we lost it was always going to be a tough season but nobody expected it to be quite this tough.
“But the players must take responsbility too, including me.
“Managers always get the brunt of the criticism because they make the decisions but, collectively, we haven’t done well enough over the season.”