Stoke City offer Martin O'Neill vacant manager's job but length of deal may be a deal-breaker
They've made their move.
Stoke City have offered Martin O'Neill the chance to return to Premier League management. The Potters have made their move after missing out on Quique Sanchez Flores, the former Watford boss who was reportedly their first-choice.
Stoke are now negotiating with O'Neill, who has been in charge of the Republic of Ireland for over four years. Roy Keane is expected to follow O'Neill to the bet365 Stadium.
However, while there have been developments in the past 24 hours, it is not a done deal. It remains unclear whether or not O'Neill will accept Stoke's offer. The 65-year-old former Sunderland and Aston Villa boss has a verbal agreement with the FAI to extend his contract as Ireland boss.
In addition, according to The Daily Telegraph's Luke Edwards, O'Neill is not interested in taking charge at Stoke on a short-term basis. A difference over the length of contract may prove decisive.
Although Flores was believed to have been the preferred option, the Stoke hierarchy value O'Neill's vast experience in Premier League management. According to Edwards, O'Neill actually rejected a short-term contract offer from Everton recently which allowed Sam Allardyce to be appointed as Toffees boss.
If Stoke offer O'Neill a deal longer than until the end of the season, the former Celtic boss may be inclined to accept. The Potters, who currently sit 18th in the Premier League table, face Manchester United on Monday night.