Kieran McKenna is a top six manager in the making and ‘a dark horse’ to replace Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool

Ipswich boss Kieran McKenna is destined to lead a top six team and could even be a contender for the Liverpool job.

That’s the view of Peterborough chairman Darragh MacAnthony, who waxed lyrical about McKenna guiding the Tractor Boys to the top of the Championship.


Kieran McKenna works miracles at IpswichCredit: Getty

The Reds are considering options to replace Jurgen Klopp and may have noticed the excellent work done by McKenna at Portman Road – particularly after their last 3-2 win over Southampton.

After securing promotion from League One last season, McKenna put the Suffolk side on course to win a second successive promotion which would take them back to the Premier League.

Ipswich top the table and lead Leeds, Leicester and Southampton in seeking automatic promotion – three teams with much deeper pockets after playing in the top flight last season.

While MacAnthony praised Ipswich’s players, the 48-year-old insisted the former Manchester United manager is destined for the top level.

Asked by talkSPORT host Jim White if McKenna is being earmarked to become Premier League manager, MacAnthony replied: “Yes, (producer) Luke – a Liverpool fan – made fun of me this morning, as as an outside dark horse (to succeed Klopp).

“I love his brand of football. I’ve been watching him since last year in League One and what he’s done.

“You could say Ipswich are a big club, but they didn’t spend millions this summer.

“They’ve kept a lot of the squad and squad from League One and they’re top of the league with five or six games to go, it’s really incredible.

Ipswich are top of the Championship and well on course to secure promotion to the Premier League


Ipswich are top of the Championship and well on course to secure promotion to the Premier LeagueCredit: Getty
McKenna was previously assistant manager at Manchester United


McKenna was previously assistant manager at Manchester UnitedCredit: Getty – Contributor

“It’s not just his training and management, it’s also his style. It’s great to watch.

“If you watched that match yesterday, it was great publicity for the industry. It was just non-stop. Russell (Martin) is doing a great job with Southampton and their style.

Gabby Agbonlahor says he would rather see Ipswich promoted to Premier League than Leeds

“Then you have Ipswich with his style and it was just an exciting game to watch and that’s what you want to see. I think he’s destined for the top.

“I think he will win promotion with Ipswich this year and he will surprise people with what he does with them in the Premier League and within five or six years he will be managing a top six club.

“With all due respect to Ipswich. I respect everything they did there, but I don’t think you can keep a guy like that forever.

Asked if that gave him confidence that Peterborough could compete at that level, MacAnthony added: “Yes, well we finished a few places behind Ipswich last year and they were a brilliant team and a brilliant group.

“But I look at them and I think there’s a chance for us because it’s not like Ipswich have paid £5m per player, they’ve been surgical in their transfer activity.

“Yes, they’ve paid a few pounds for some of them and paid wages, but they’ve built a great squad and a few of the guys they’ve got in there, you think: ‘Is that?’ they would succeed in the championship’ and they adapted to it without problem.

Asked who would go up, MacAnthony said: “I think Leeds will win the league.

“They were on fire and I think they are going to win the league. I watched them against Hull and they weren’t at their best and they still won.

“Leeds will win the league and hopefully Ipswich will come second – we’ve got a few hundred thousand dollars in promotion bonuses for Jack Taylor that we sold to them, so fingers crossed for that!

McKenna guided Ipswich to promotion from League One last season


McKenna guided Ipswich to promotion from League One last seasonCredit: Rex

“Then I hope Coventry progress through the play-offs because we just sold them a player in January and we will have plenty of good additions if they are in the Premier League!

“For clubs like us, it’s really imperative to see things like that.”


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