Date: 30th November 2005 at 6:36pm
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Mandaric has said he is considering ‘two other candidates’ as well as Warnock; but the Blades boss has been favourite to takeover from the start and if he does enter talks, you would expect him to agree terms, especially when reports suggest he will be offered a 3 1/2 year deal worth £1million a season.

Mandaric told the official site: ‘I want to speak with all the managers face to face. I want to find out which one of them is the right man to turn things around. I will judge who has the confidence, the capabilities and the desire. It will be impossible to have the new manager in place this Saturday, so we hope to have everything concluded before we play Tottenham the following weekend.’

Mandaric was refused permission to talk to Crystal Palace manager Iain Dowie and early reports suggested Ruud Gullit turned down the clubs advances.

Rangers boss McLeish has been linked but the Scottish giants have also turned down Portsmouth’s advances.

Mandaric said ‘I’m very disappointed with Rangers’ response although I fully understand their prerogative. But we have not given up hope yet. I would love the opportunity to sit down with Alex McLeish so we will try one more time to speak with him. We will go back to Rangers, although, if they refuse us permission a second time, there is not much we can do.’

Former Pompey boss Harry Rednapp is also still being linked but Southampton chairman Rupert Lowe has said: ‘Milan Mandaric has not made an approach and there is no sign of one. It could not get off the ground without me being informed, and that has not happened.’

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