POSH BOSS SEARCH: McCann happy to play a waiting game

Grant McCann celebrates a Posh goal at West Brom earlier this season. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

Grant McCann celebrates a Posh goal at West Brom earlier this season. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

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Grant McCann will wait until the end of the season before deciding whether or not to apply for the Peterborough United manager’s job.

McCann, a hugely popular figure among Posh fans and the playing squad, will manage the team in their final two League One matches of the season at Shrewsbury on Saturday (April 30) and at home to Blackpool on May 8.

Posh full-back Michael Smith should play at Shrewsbury. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

Posh full-back Michael Smith should play at Shrewsbury. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

Chairman Darragh MacAnthony has guaranteed McCann an interview should he show an interest in replacing Graham Westley as permanent boss. McCann has worked as an assistant manager for both Westley and his predecessor Dave Robertson.

McCann has acted as caretaker-boss before. When Robertson left the club in April he oversaw a 5-1 win at Oldham and a 1-1 home draw with Walsall.

The 36 year-old has ambitions of becoming a manager one day, but he was guarded about when that day would arrive when facing the local media today (April 27).

“Ever since I was 25-26 I have been working towards becoming a manager,” McCann said. “That’s when I started taking my coaching badges and I should complete them this summer.

Club legend Dave Farrell will be back in the Posh dug out at Shrewsbury.

Club legend Dave Farrell will be back in the Posh dug out at Shrewsbury.

“I want to be a manager one day, but right now I am fully focused on preparing this team to win the final two games of the season.

“The other stuff can wait. When I spoke to the chairman last Saturday night (the day of (Westley’s sacking) he just told me to take charge of the final two matches and then we’d speak in the summer.

“That’s what will happen. I know I haven’t given anything away, but anything that happens behind the scenes between now and the end of the season is irrelevant to me.”

“I havn’t spoken to the chairman as often as the manager obviously, but when we do speak we get on great. I also get on very well with Barry Fry (the director football).

“But the players have my full attention right now.

“I called them in last Sunday and told them three managers in 13-14 months is not acceptable to this football club.

“There will be no more days off. Anyone thinking we are in holiday mode will have to think again. I will pick a team I think will beat Shrewsbury and the players will know what that is tomorrow. It’s a clean slate for everyone.

“I want to look back to last September when I took over last time and do the same as I did then. There was a real feel-good factor around the club leading up to that game. I want the team to play the style of football this club expects and I want the players to have smiles on their faces again. We will play very positively.

“A manager losing his job is never pleasant, but the rest of us have to carry on do what’s best for the club. I expect to win these final two matches.

“The players responded well on Monday and Tuesday, but to be honest that doesn’t interest me. I want to see the response on Saturday at Shrewsbury.”

Right-back Michael Smith is expected to return from injury at Shrewsbury and midfielder Chris Forrester will definitely be back after serving a one-game suspension. No-one will be rested with the possible exception of central defender Michael Bostwick who is on 14 cautions, one away from a three-match ban which would carry on into next season.

McCann will be assisted in the technical area by former Posh star Dave Farrell, as he was in September. Goalkeeping coach Mark Tyler is expected to play as number one Ben Alnwick is carrying a knock.