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By ESPN Staff
Nov 8, 2007

Whelan-factor makes Wigan appealing - Souness

Graeme Souness believes Dave Whelan's knowledge of football makes the managerial vacancy at Wigan an appealing one.

The Latics sacked manager Chris Hutchings on Monday after just 12 games in charge and the Scot has since been heavily linked with the job - although chairman Whelan has admitted he would love to welcome back former boss Paul Jewell.

Souness, though, maintained last night he has not spoken to anyone about taking over at the JJB Stadium.

He has plenty of managerial experience with Newcastle, Blackburn, Liverpool, Rangers, Galatasaray and Benfica.

And he told Sky Sports: 'I have not spoken to anyone but it would be a good job for someone.

'You are dealing with a football person. There are too many chief executives who think they understand the game and think they are capable of making football decisions.

'I would not imagine that would be the case at Wigan. Dave Whelan understands what football is all about.'

Whelan himself admitted his 'great relationship' with Jewell means he would be thrilled to welcome back the former manager.

Jewell ended his six-year stint as Latics manager hours after securing their Premier League status on the final day of last season.

He admitted yesterday that he was ready to return to management, and Whelan would be thrilled to bring him straight back to the Lancashire club.

Asked if the former Bradford and Sheffield Wednesday boss would be his first choice to replace Hutchings, Whelan told BBC Radio Five Live: 'Absolutely.'

He added: 'If he applied for the job I'd certainly love to talk to Paul.

'I had a great relationship with him at Wigan Athletic.

'I'm delighted because if he is interested I'll be talking to him, certainly.'

Whelan's head was turned by Jewell's revelation that he is ready to listen to offers of employment after a six-month sabbatical.

'Let me make it quite clear - I have had no contact with chairman Dave Whelan these past few days or anyone at the club for that matter,' he wrote in Metro.

'But, after six months away from management, I am ready and willing to return to work.

'Any offers that come my way I will consider and I firmly believe I will return to football refreshed and a better manager.'

Meanwhile, Souness also revealed he had been interviewed about replacing former Liverpool team-mate Sammy Lee at Bolton, and said: 'I had an interview but for reasons I would prefer to keep private I withdrew my interest.

'After the interview there were one or two things I was not happy with.'

Bolton eventually chose Gary Megson to be their new boss, with the former West Brom manager taking over at the Reebok Stadium on October 25.