/Soccer: Clarkes apology to Kilmarnock fans fuels speculation about Scotland job

Soccer: Clarkes apology to Kilmarnock fans fuels speculation about Scotland job

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football – Scottish Premiership – Rangers vs Kilmarnock – Ibrox, Glasgow, Britain – May 5, 2018 Kilmarnock manager Steve Clarke REUTERS/Scott Heppell/File photo

(Reuters) – Kilmarnock boss Steve Clarke on Sunday apologised to fans for failing to deliver a title during his tenure at the Scottish Premiership club, as speculation grows about his imminent appointment as Scotland’s next manager.

British media reports have linked Clarke with the vacant position along with Aberdeen’s Derek McInnes and Scotland under-21 head coach Scot Gemmill.

In a speech to fans at Rugby Park after Kilmarnock defeated Rangers 2-1 to finish third in the standings and secure a Europa League spot, Clarke appeared to drop a hint about his next role as Alex McLeish’s successor.

“When I came here, we had a disconnect between the support, the board, and the players and I said together we’re stronger,” Clarke, who took charge of Kilmarnock in Oct. 2017, said.

“In my time at Kilmarnock, I’m sorry I didn’t win you a trophy but I stand here in front of three stands of Kilmarnock supporters — that’s my trophy.”

McLeish was sacked last month after 12 games in charge following Scotland’s disappointing start to their Euro 2020 qualification campaign.

The Scottish FA is expected to name a new manager ahead of their squad announcement for next month’s qualifying matches against Cyprus and Belgium.

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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