THE hunt is under way to find Pep Clotet’s successor after the Spaniard was sacked by Oxford United yesterday.

The U’s board took the decision on Sunday in the wake of the 2-1 defeat to Bury and they released a statement saying it was “in the best interests of the club”.

Calls from interested parties were being received within minutes of the announcement yesterday morning.

Neither Clotet, who won 12 of his 36 games in charge, nor chairman Darryl Eales, who is understood to be out of the country, have yet to comment publicly about the decision.

More will be known this evening, with caretaker boss Derek Fazackerley taking charge of the U’s Checkatrade Trophy quarter-final against Chelsea Under 21s at Stamford Bridge.

Formerly the assistant head coach, the 66-year-old was believed to be interested in succeeding Michael Appleton last summer, but lost out to Clotet.

Whether he throws his hat in the ring this time remains to be seen, but United view Fazackerley as a safe pair of hands.

The postponement of Saturday’s visit to Wigan Athletic due to their hosts’ Emirates FA Cup commitments means United are not in league action until February 3.

That gives them time to weigh up options, while a good start under Fazackerley could mean he is given the job until the end of the season.

United have the option of revisiting their shortlist from last summer, which included Matthew Upson and Partick Thistle boss Alan Archibald, but it is clear the job is an attractive one.

Appleton was the initial front-runner with the bookmakers and would be the most popular choice with supporters, but a return is thought to be unlikely given his successful start as Leicester City’s No 2.

Simon Grayson also has a short price and had success in League One with Preston North End.