Sean O'Driscoll and Steve Cotterill are contenders for Bristol City manager's job
Bristol City will speak to Sean O'Driscoll and Steve Cotterill regarding the vacant manager's job at Ashton Gate.
The search has already begun to find a successor to Derek McInnes, who was sacked after 15 months in charge following Saturday's 4-0 home defeat to Leicester.
Former Wales international defender Mark Bowen has emerged as a surprise contender and is a short-priced favourite with bookmakers, while Coventry boss Mark Robins has also been linked with the job.
But The Post understands City's board of directors have already sounded out O'Driscoll and Cotterill.
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Both are currently available and looking for work and appointing either one of them would not require City to pay compensation.
Although Robins just missed out to McInnes in October 2011 and is highly regarded by City owner Steve Lansdown, he is now in charge of League One Coventry and is under contract at the Ricoh Arena until the end of next season.
Former West Ham and Norwich defender Bowen has previously worked as an assistant to Mark Hughes at Blackburn and Fulham and is currently between jobs.
He has been installed as a 4/6 favourite by bookmakers but, having twice gambled with young managers in recent years, the Ashton Gate board would prefer to appoint a more experienced candidate as the club battles relegation.
O'Driscoll is an obvious candidate, having been interviewed for the position after Keith Millen was sacked 15 months ago.
He made it onto City's final short-list of three back then, only to lose out to McInnes.
He recently lost his job at Nottingham Forest and has since spoken to Blackpool, who are looking to replace Blackburn-bound boss Michael Appleton.
But O'Driscoll has yet to commit to the Seasiders and is still at liberty to listen to alternative offers.
Currently working on a short-term consultancy basis for Queens Park Rangers, Cotterill is looking to get back into management after being sacked by Nottingham Forest at the end of last season.
City chairman Keith Dawe is a known admirer of the former Portsmouth manager, who has been a guest in the boardroom at a number of matches at Ashton Gate this season.
Cotterill's experience of working within the confines of a modest budget at Cheltenham and Portsmouth mark him out as a strong contender.
Assistant manager Tony Docherty has been asked to take training today, but his days at Ashton Gate appear to be numbered and the board of directors are keen to appoint McInnes' successor before next Saturday's trip to Leeds United.
Although the requirement is for an experienced campaigner with knowledge of the Championship, City's board will want to appoint a manager who will commit to their stated strategy of recruiting young players and cutting costs.
City managing director Jon Lansdown said: "The decision (to sack McInnes) is still raw. We will regroup and look at what is available.
"We have a priority to stay up as a football club but we have many stated objectives and we want to be true to that.
"We have to make sure we get the right person but ideally a quick appointment will suit. But still we have got to make sure it is the right one.
"I won't put any specifics on it. Experience is important but we will judge every application or person we approach by their cover and make a decision based on what we are looking for as a club."
Quoted at 1/5 on to be the next Blackpool manager, O'Driscoll is a 6/1 shot to land the vacant City job. while Cotterill is 7/1.
Robins, Exeter boss Paul Tisdale and former Sheffield Wednesday manager Gary Megson are all priced at 12/1.