HARTLEPOOL United Chairman Raj Singh has confirmed that the club are well on with their process of appointing a new manager with interviews set to be held in the near future.

Pools are looking to appoint a new boss for next season following the sacking of Graeme Lee after one win in eleven games.

At the weekend, it’s understood the club were working through a shortlist of candidates for the role with senior sources suggested that they were hopeful of completing an appointment in a month’s time at the end of May or the beginning of June.

The timescale would be to allow the new manager to organise their pre-season schedule, orchestrate deals for new players and decide which current players he wants to keep at the club.

Singh confirmed that the club have now spoken to candidates remotely as they assess their options and are looking to hold formal interviews for the manager’s role as soon as possible.

“There has been a lot of people that have applied for the job, as expected. We’re just working through the applications” said the Pools Chairman.

“It’s just a case of seeing the interested parties that have applied and then going from there really.”

While the club are hopeful of finalising an appointment within the next month just a few weeks before pre-season, the Chairman was reticent to give any firm timescales due to the complexities of appointing a new man at the helm.

Singh continued: “I don’t think you can set yourself too many deadlines. Things change very quickly in football.

“That’s why you can’t set a deadline. But we want it done as soon as possible. We’re already on with it. We’ve already spoke to plenty of people over the phone and we want to speak to people personally pretty soon.”

A number of names that have been linked with the job include Halifax Town manager Pete Wild and ex Sunderland boss Simon Grayson. However, a move for Wild would prove to be complicated due to the Shaymen’s involvement in the upcoming National League play-offs.

As part of Singh’s early conversations with a number of candidates, he outlined a budget that they would have at their disposal if they were to be handed the job to which Singh received positive feedback.

That being said, the ambitious Chairman would expect to see a minimum return of a finish in the League Two play-offs as Singh continued: “We’ve set the budget there. A good manager should get you up to the play-offs at the very least and a brilliant manager should get you into the automatic with the same budget.

“I’ve said it before, it’s not the money, it’s how you spend it. It’s okay setting big budgets but I’ve said it before… where’s it getting Salford?

“All the managers we’ve spoken to, they’re happy. It’s a good enough budget, at the very least, to get us into the play-offs.

“There has been teams that have gone up on a budget less than that and then there are teams that have stayed in this league with double the budget. So if you look at it like that then it’s all about the manager.”

Meanwhile, it’s understood previous manager Lee was offered the chance to manage the final game of the League Two season against Colchester United.

The club made their announcement on Thursday evening just two days before the game at the Suit Direct Stadium.