Darrell Clarke will not be returning to Bristol Rovers following his exit from League Two side Walsall, according to BristolLive reporter Sam Frost.
Football Insider revealed earlier today that Clarke was walking away from his job at the Bescot Stadium just over halfway into a three-year contract as he will be moving to another club.
And if Rovers have been ruled out, then it seems to indicate that Clarke will be heading to either Walsall’s league rivals Port Vale or he will be stepping up a level to Northampton Town, who parted company with Keith Curle last week.
Gas fans will probably have had their hopes up for a Clarke return following the earlier news, despite his initial tenure as Rovers manager not ending fantastically in December 2018 following a run of seven defeats in his last 10 games.
But the good times outweighed the bad, with Clarke guiding them to back-to-back promotions in 2015 and 2016 from the Conference to League One.
Clarke’s reported Saddlers exit has come as a bit out of the blue, but signs of the club struggling off the pitch appeared on transfer deadline day at the start of this month.
Are you Bristol Rovers mad? Try get 20 out of 20 on this Gas quiz all about the club’s season so far
Walsall sold both Elijah Adebayo and Zak Jules to Luton Town and MK Dons respectively for undisclosed fees, replacing them with loanees from League One clubs.
Despite the circumstances, the Saddlers sit in 11th place in League Two and just six points from the play offs, but it looks like they will be continuing without Clarke.
Bristol Rovers fans will probably be gutted as a lot of them see Clarke as a bit of a hero for his early exploits as manager.
They’ve endured a bit of a nightmare this season with both Ben Garner and Paul Tisdale, and Clarke would have been a real feel-good appointment to try and turn their fortunes around.
And out of the two other vacant EFL roles, you’d expect it would be Northampton rather than Port Vale that will end up taking Clarke from Walsall, which is still quite a surprising move to happen.