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Last Updated: Sunday, 24 August, 2003, 17:31 GMT 18:31 UK
Upton Park contenders
Trevor Brooking, caretaker West Ham manager
Brooking took the helm at the end of last season
West Ham have finally shown the door to manager Glenn Roeder after Saturday's defeat to Rotherham.

But who will replace him?

The Hammers have a tradition of appointing from within - with the exception of Lou Macari - and although Ian Dowie is currently manager of Oldham, the former West Ham striker would be welcomed back to the fold.

So who are the leading contenders?

Trevor Brooking

Revered at Upton Park where he spent the whole of his playing career, Brooking almost pulled off the impossible task of saving West Ham from relegation last season.

Brooking filled in as caretaker boss for the last three games of the Premiership campaign while Roeder underwent major brain surgery.

West Ham won against Manchester City and Chelsea but drew on the final day at Birmingham although by then the club's destiny was out of Brooking's hands as Bolton beat Middlesbrough to preserve their own Premiership status.

However in those three games, Brooking provided a much-needed stabilising influence on the sidelines and tightened up West Ham's leaky defence which is once again proving their Achilles heel.

Brooking's appointment would be welcomed by West Ham fans, but the question remains as to whether the BBC television pundit would want the job on a full-time basis.

Odds: 5/4 favourite

Paul Goddard

The West Ham assistant manager has been installed as second favourite to succeed Roeder and his existing presence at the club could well help him.

West Ham assisant manager Paul Goddard
Goddard may make the next step up or out

But equally, his association with Glenn Roeder's reign at the club may count against him in the eyes of fans who want a clean break.

When he moved to Upton Park for 800,000 in 1980, Goddard was the Hammers' record signing and scored 71 goals in 213 League and Cup matches.

He then moved to Newcastle - where he played alongside Glenn Roeder - in October 1986.

His appointment as first-team coach at the club was one of Roeder's first actions after he took over from Harry Redknapp, bringing Goddard from Ipswich, where he had been in charge of their Under-19 team.

Odds: 5/2

Iain Dowie

Former West Ham striker Dowie is currently manager of cash-strapped Second Division outfit Oldham but is known to be disillusioned with the club, which is in administration.

He has threatened to quit the Latics after seeing his squad, which reached the play-offs last season, stripped of all its prized assets - including Clint Hill, Fitz Hall and Tony Carss - during the summer.

Oldham manager Iain Dowie
Dowie has warned he may leave Oldham

Twelve players have left with just one loan player and four non-contract signings arriving at Boundary Park.

West Ham have their own financial problems and have also seen the likes of Glen Johnson, Joe Cole and Freddie Kanoute, Paolo di Canio and Trevor Sinclair exit the club.

But they have so far held onto Jermain Defoe, Michael Carrick and David James, and Dowie could use his past connections with the club to put himself in the frame.

Odds: 6-1

Stuart Pearce

Pearce threw his hat into the ring for the West Ham post when Harry Redknapp was sacked as manager in May 2001 only for Roeder to get the nod.

The former Nottingham Forest and West Ham left-back is now coaching at Manchester City where the 41-year-old ended his playing career.

Manchester City coach Stuart Pearce
Pearce is ready for a managerial role

At the time of his retirement from professional football, Pearce said: "It is a good time to bale out now and forge a name for myself in the coaching and management world."

He had a taste of management with Nottingham Forest in the 1996-97 season and is known to want another crack at it.

Pearce was an inspirational leader during his time at West Ham and the club could definitely do with a strong character to lead them out of their existing malaise.

Odds: Not given

George Graham

Graham has been out of management since being sacked by Tottenham in 2001.

A name that is usually linked with every managerial vacancy going in London, it is no surprise that the former Arsenal boss should find himself on a possible short-list.

He has plenty of experience having won major honours with Arsenal and Spurs, and his defensive style of play could even work in his favour on this occasion with the Hammers looking to tighten up at the back.

But the Scot is unlikely to leave the comfort of the television studio to reshape the fortunes of First Division West Ham.

Odds: Not given

Who should replace Glenn Roeder at Upton Park?
Iain Dowie
Paul Goddard
Trevor Brooking
George Graham
Stuart Pearce
426 Votes Cast
Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

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