Republic of Ireland boss 'to be appointed by Christmas'

Sunderland's Martin O'Neill prior to kick off in the match against Norwich on March 17, 2013
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The FAI hope to appoint a successor to Giovanni Trapattoni as Republic of Ireland manager before Christmas, according to chief executive John Delaney.

The Football Association of Ireland are optimistic of appointing a new Republic of Ireland manager before Christmas, according to their chief executive John Delaney.

Giovanni Trapattoni's five-year tenure in charge was ended in September, and former Aston Villa and Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill is the odds-on favourite to succeed the Italian.

Noel King has been installed as caretaker manager for the World Cup qualifiers against Germany and Kazakhstan next week, but is not being considered for the job on a full-time basis.

The FAI have appointed former Republic international Ray Houghton and High Performance Director Ruud Dokter to oversee the selection process, which should be concluded before the New Year.

Ireland's chances of finishing in a playoff position for Brazil 2014 are all-but mathematically over ahead of their qualifying double bill, for which King named his squad on Monday.

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