Ex-Aston Villa playmaker in frame for vacant managerial role

Walsall v Aston Villa - Pre Season Friendly
Walsall v Aston Villa - Pre Season Friendly / Paul Gilham/GettyImages

Former Aston Villa player Shaun Maloney has emerged as a potential candidate for the vacant Watford job in the Championship, according to a report by Football Insider.

The Scotsman, who is 41-years-old, has done some impressive work with Wigan Athletic in League One over recent times and is being linked with a summer switch to the league above.

Watford are in the hunt for a new permanent boss to replace Valerien Ismael after they sacked the former Barnsley and West Brom man recently after a poor run of form. They have placed ex-Aston Villa midfielder Tom Cleverley in interim charge until the end of the season.

Ex-Aston Villa man

Maloney played his football at Villa Park from 2007 to 2008 and played 33 games in all competitions for the Midlands outfit, chipping in with seven goals.

He also had spells at Celtic, Wigan, Chicago Fire and Hull City before hanging up his boots in 2017.

The ex-Scotland international delved into the coaching world with early stints at Celtic and the Belgium national team before Hibernian made him their number one.

However, his time in Edinburgh didn't go to plan and he was sacked after winning 31.6% of games.

Wigan gave him another chance in the dugout in January last year and he has worked wonders with the North West side, despite a point deductions last summer.

Watford could see him as the man to lead them forward. It has been a disappointing campaign for the Hornets and they are sat in mid-table with play-offs unlikely.