COLCHESTER United are on the hunt for a new head coach.

The U's are looking for a successor to John McGreal, who parted company with the U's on Tuesday after four years as boss.

Colchester are likely to make an internal appointment - but U's chairman Robbie Cowling has not ruled out the possibility of bringing in someone from outside of the club.

The U's will be putting into action a new plan that will see an even stronger link between their first team and youth set-up, going forward.

And as a result, Cowling has said he needs someone to deal with the 'significant changes' required.

We look at the leading candidates who could be in line to take the U's head coach role and move them forward.


THE U's promotion winner is favourite for the job and highly regarded by chairman Robbie Cowling.

Brown, who had a caretaker spell in charge of the U's in 2015, is currently manager of Isthmian League division north side Maldon and Tiptree.

The 42-year-old led the non-league outfit to the brink of promotion this season before the season was cut short due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Brown's stock has also risen after he guided the Jammers to the second round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history, beating Leyton Orient along the way.

He is currently still employed by the U's as part of their alliance with Maldon and has excellent knowledge of the academy, at Florence Park.


HAS worked alongside John McGreal as his number two for the past four years or so, helping to guide the U's to the play-offs and the Carabao Cup quarter-finals, this season.

Like Brown, the former Colchester United striker is well regarded by Cowling and would also provide a natural link between first team and academy.

Ball, 50, has had managerial experience in the past too at the likes of Stanway Rovers, Maldon and Tiptree and Leiston.

The former Arsenal youngster is a popular figure among the U's players and could prove to be a logical fit for the U's.


IS currently operating as Colchester United's first-ever Director of Performance, having been elevated into the role from Academy Manager last summer.

The former Brentford youth-team coach has been at the club since 2016 so already has good knowledge of all levels at the U's.

De Souza, who has a Sports Science degree and a Business Masters degree, has experience of coaching at first team level.

Prior to moving to Colchester, he spent 11 years at Luton Town as a player and then a coach, taking over as their under-18 and reserve-team manager at Kenilworth Road.

Last summer, he joined an elite band of coaches in gaining the prestigious UEFA Pro Licence qualification, joining the likes of Liverpool icon Steven Gerrard and Manchester United legend Peter Schmeichel in passing the FA Level 5 in Coaching Football course, the FA’s highest available qualification.


IS highly thought of within the U's academy, having returned to his former club as under-23 player-coach last summer.

The former Sheffield United and Barnsley winger has recently hung his boots and has first-hand experience of the modern game, both on and off the pitch.

Campbell-Ryce, 37, already has intrinsic knowledge of the capabilities of Colchester's youngsters, many of whom are likely to play their part for the club at senior level, in the coming years.


ANOTHER Colchester United promotion-winner who has gone into management and would be a popular choice with U's fans.

Watson has plenty of coaching experience now, having managed at National League side Ebbsfleet United this season, managed the likes of Bishop's Stortford and worked alongside Teddy Sheringham, at Stevenage.

The 46-year-old ex-Spurs midfielder is still very fond of his former club and has made no secret in the past of his desire to one day take over as manager, at the JobServe Community Stadium.


WAS on Colchester United's coaching staff for several years prior to leaving to take over as Needham Market's academy manager, last summer.

The former Ipswich Town and Manchester City midfielder has managed both the U's under-23 and under-18 sides in the past, along with Maldon and Tiptree in the Isthmian League.

The 47-year-old is currently manager of Needham Market, along with being Northern Ireland under-21s' assistant manager.


HAS impressed as manager of National League side Barnet since taking over as permanent manager in January, 2019.

The 45-year-old former Ipswich Town player has led the Bees to the National League play-offs this season.

Has also been linked with the vacant Southend United managerial position.

Made more than 600 career appearances as a player for the likes of Barnet, Wycombe Wanderers and Shrewsbury Town.


THE former MK Dons boss is currently third favourite with some bookmakers for the U's job.

The 47-year-old been out of the game since leaving his role as Dons boss in November, 2019.

Spent 12 years at Exeter City - where he became the first manager to lead them the club to back to back promotions - and has taken charge of nearly 700 first-team games during his managerial career so far.