QPR want Birmingham manager Rowett

QPR: Gary Rowett

QPR want Birmingham boss Gary Rowett to be their next manager.

Rangers wanted Rowett, 42, before appointing Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink in December last year.

Rowett opted to stay at St Andrews, having also been pursued by Fulham, and QPR subsequently turned to Hassebaink, who was sacked on Saturday.

This time they hope to prise him away from Birmingham, where he previously spent two years as a player.

He took over as Blues boss after an impressive two-year spell at Burton, where he was succeeded, ironically, by Hasselbaink.

Rowett, whose playing career also included stints at Everton, Derby, Charlton and Burton, could be installed as QPR manager on Thursday.

Birmingham are currently seventh in the Championship table and finished 10th under Rowett last season.

Rangers have spoken to Ian Holloway, and he is seen as an increasingly attractive option by the club’s owners, who are aware of his popularity among many fans and are minded to turn to him if Rowett stays at Birmingham.

Holloway made more than 150 appearances as a player for QPR and led them to promotion from the third tier during a five-year spell as boss.

The 53-year-old was axed in 2006 and has since managed Plymouth, Leicester, Blackpool, Crystal Palace and Millwall. He currently works as a television pundit.

Former R’s midfielder and coach Marc Bircham, who was his right-hand man at Millwall, is likely to return to QPR if Holloway is appointed.

Tim Sherwood was immediately installed as the odds-on favourite for the job after Hasselbaink was axed at the weekend, but the former Tottenham manager has so far not been seriously in the running.

Sherwood, a close friend of Les Ferdinand who worked with the Rangers director of football during their time together at Spurs, was among a number of potential candidates the Rangers hierarchy discussed.

They have long been interested in ex-Derby manager Paul Clement, now assistant to Bayern Munich boss Carlo Ancelotti.

The 44-year-old son of former QPR and England right-back Dave Clement was lined up to take over at Loftus Road following the departure of Harry Redknapp in February 2015.

Clement had a short spell as Derby manager
Clement had a short spell as Derby manager

At the time he was with Ancelotti at Real Madrid and wanted to see out the remaining months of his contract at the Spanish club.

Chris Ramsey was therefore installed at QPR initially as a stop-gap, but impressed during the early stages of his time in charge and was given the job on a permanent basis.

Clement subsequently took over as manager at Derby, who sacked him in February this year with the club fifth in the Championship table.

He was on a shortlist drawn up by QPR after the decision to ditch Hasselbaink, but Rowett is the top target and Holloway has emerged as the preferred back-up option.

Steve Cotterill, briefly on the coaching staff at Rangers under Redknapp, wants the job but has not been considered so far.

Karl Robinson, who recently left MK Dons, wants the job too and was interviewed on Tuesday.

Dougie Freedman, who began his career at QPR, has also applied.