Ross County: Patrick Kluivert a surprise candidate for vacancy

By Liam McLeodBBC Scotland
Patrick Kluivert was assistant to the Netherlands manager Louis van Gaal at the World Cup

Former Barcelona striker Patrick Kluivert and ex-Barca youth coach Sergio Lobera have emerged as candidates for the Ross County vacancy.

Kluivert, 38, was assistant to Louis van Gaal at the 2014 World Cup as the Netherlands finished third in Brazil.

He has yet to manage a club in his own right but did spend a year with FC Twente's reserves and had spells at AZ Alkmaar and as NEC Nijmegen assistant.

Lobera was most recently in charge of Spanish second-tier club Las Palmas.

The 37-year-old helped bring through European and former world champions Pedro and Sergio Busquets while at the Nou Camp. He also spent a short time as assistant manager to the late Tito Vilanova two years ago.

Patrick Kluivert
Striker Patrick Kluivert scored 40 goals in 79 Netherlands appearances from 1994 to 2004

Kluivert helped Ajax to their famous 1995 Champions League triumph, scoring the winning goal against AC Milan in Vienna, and had a lengthy spell at Barca after a year at Milan.

He earned 79 caps for the Netherlands national team over a decade.

The Ross County board will begin considering candidates for Derek Adams's replacement next week.

after a largely successful seven years in charge over two spells, with the club languishing at the bottom of the league with four straight opening defeats. His father George, who was director of football, also left the club.

Chairman Roy MacGregor confirmed Kluivert had applied for the job.

"I cannot believe the quality of applicants," MacGregor told BBC Scotland.

"We have had a really good response. That response five years ago would never have happened and it wouldn't have happened two years ago.

"The credit for putting Ross County on the map is back to George and Derek and I'd like to thank them for that.

"The calibre of applicant has been really good."

Inverness Caledonian Thistle and Hibernian boss Terry Butcher has also been mentioned in connection with the job.

"I believe Terry [Butcher] is under garden leave with Hibs," explained MacGregor.

"He certainly was a motivator [at Inverness], he did a wonderful job there. He has an affiliation with the Highlands.

"I think an affiliation with the Highlands is really important and that they understand what our area is about."