Hull City's search for a new manager has begun after Phil Brown was sacked on Monday, but the Premier League strugglers (who have nine games to save their season), are looking to make a quick appointment and a few candidates are already emerging as favourites.
Among those rumoured with the job are Portsmouth manager Avram Grant, as well as Gary Megson, Steve Coppell and Gareth Southgate, but Soccernet takes a closer look at the top contenders.
Hull's and the bookies' favoured option, the former Crystal Palace, Oldham, Coventry and QPR boss has been out of work since leaving Newcastle last year. Dowie won't break the bank and, crucially, he is available and could be instated within the next 24 hours. Chairman Adam Pearson is understood to have contacted Dowie regarding the role.
Despite being out of football since he was sacked by Leeds seven years ago, Venables guided Middlesbrough to safety in similar circumstances in 2001. Now 67, Venables is looking for his last big job in management having privately expressed his regret at not taking over at Newcastle when he was offered a week-to-week deal by Mike Ashley. Venables certainly has the experience to steady the ship at the KC Stadium.
Sacked by Manchester City in December, Hughes is the fans' choice. Regarded as one of Britain's brightest young managers, the Welshman has reportedly turned down an offer to manage the Tigers in the past, but Pearson will be hoping he can arrange a meeting with Hughes in the hope to persuade him to reconsider. However, Hughes is likely to have bigger wage demands than the other candidates and it may not represent the smartest choice for Pearson, for whom the clock is ticking.
Taylor remains an outside bet according to the bookies but having admitted being "interested" in the job he remains in contention. The former caretaker England boss is currently in charge of League Two's Bradford City, but having guided Hull to two successive promotions in 2004 and 2005, Taylor is remembered fondly at the KC Stadium and would find it hard to turn his former side down. Taylor said: "People know my feelings about Hull City. It was an incredible four years there." He added: "Me being interested in Hull City, I think that's pretty obvious - but I don't think I'm a contender".
Having worked with Pearson at Derby, the former Bradford and Wigan boss may be the chairman's preferred choice for the hot-seat. Jewell has been out of management since he quit Derby in December 2008 and is another candidate ready to step straight into the role. But Jewell's abysmal record at Derby may still be too fresh in Pearson's memory.