Betting suspended on United job

  • Last Updated: May 8 2013, 22:35 BST

Sky Bet have suspended betting on the next Manchester United manager after David Moyes was continually heavily backed at odds as short as 1/50.

Moyes: Favourite for the Man Utd job
Moyes: Favourite for the Man Utd job

The Everton boss has consistently commanded favouritism to succeed Sir Alex Ferguson, who announced he will retire at the end of the season, and has seen his price plummet since coming in from 10/11 on Wednesday morning.

Jose Mourinho is the only other contender to attract significant stakes but looks set to return to Chelsea this summer, with betting halted on the 'Special One' embarking on a second stint at Stamford Bridge earlier in the week after Rafael Benitez dropped a significant hint on his successor.

Sky Bet football trader Chris Spicer said: "Moyes has been our favourite since well before Ferguson announced his retirement but Mourinho actually started to attract the majority of the stakes on Tuesday night as rumours begun to surface.

"However, the backing became more and more lopsided towards Moyes as the day progressed and became relentless at very short odds this evening, forcing us to suspend betting."

Earlier, Manchester United chief executive David Gill outlined the kind of manager the club would be looking for to succeed Ferguson.

He told MUTV: "The qualities we are looking for are the ones that have been inherent at Manchester United for many years.

"Our two most successful eras were with managers who got involved with all aspects of the club, from the youth team to the first team, and had that degree of loyalty and understanding of the football club.

"Clearly he has to have the requisite football experience, both in terms of domestic and European experience. It is a small pool but we will move forward."

  • Having left United for Celtic in 2005, Roy Keane's testimonial reunited the Irishman with his former boss.
  • Fergie embraces Fred the Red following a Premier League match at Old Trafford in 2006.
  • Fergie time, squeaky bum time, call it what you will; Sir Alex checking his watch has become an iconic image of modern football.
  • After struggling to regain their dominance of the Premier League in the mid-noughties, Fergie was able to bring the good times back to Manchester in 2007.
  • In what would turn out to be one of Sir Alex's more controversial signings Carlos Tevez joined the Reds in 2007 for £20 million.
  • Fergie also brought in two promising midfielders; Owen Hargreaves and Nani, as he attempted to keep hold of the title in 2008.
  • Sven Goran Erikson joined Sir Alex to lay a wreath in the centre circle of Old Trafford to mark the 50th anniversary of the Munich air disaster.
  • Ferguson was once again reunited with his former captain, but this time the two went head-to-head as managers; after Keane took on the Sunderland job.
  • Another back-to-back title win for Fergie and United in 2008, as they equalled Liverpool's record of 18 top flight championships.
  • 2008 also marked a successful Champions League campaign for Sir Alex, as his team beat Chelsea on penalties to win the club's third European Cup.
  • Manchester United were confirmed as the World's best club, as Fergie lifted the Fifa Club World Cup in 2008.
  • Disappointment for Sir Alex as he leads his team to receive their runners-up medals after being defeated by Barcelona in the 2009 Champions League final.
  • Toucan play at that game: Sir Alex on a visit to Shanghai Zoo during United's pre-season tour of China.
  • An unexpected signing as Fergie recruited Liverpool legend Michael Owen on a free transfer in 2009.
  • Fergie shares a laugh with Big Sam and Mike Phelan, but Steve McClaren looks like he didn't get it.
  • Sir Alex addresses the Old Trafford faithful after the 2009-10 season, where United were pipped to the title by Carlo Ancelotti's Chelsea.
  • The media have often enjoyed a Fergie quip, and make sure they don't miss a word. Sir Alex surrounded by microphones in 2010.
  • Ferguson embraces his longest serving player, Ryan Giggs, as United are confirmed as 2010-11 Premier League champions at Ewood Park.
  • This title saw United surpass Liverpool's record of 19 top flight titles, a feat no United fan could have dreamed of when Fergie took the reigns in '86.
  • Ferguson is flanked by Barcelona players, after his team were taught a footballing lesson by the Catalans in the 2011 Champions League final.
  • Sir Alex joined his players on an open top bus during United's celebrations of Fergie's 12th and United's 19th title.
  • A 24 hour job: Sir Alex talks tactics as Manchester United head to the United States for pre-season friendlies in 2011.
  • Pele and United legend Eric Cantona faced Sir Alex as their New York Cosmos side faced the Reds for Paul Scholes' testimonial match.
  • In a game that Sir Alex described as ''the lowest moment of my career'' United were thumped 6-1 at home to local rivals City.
  • The 2011-12 season saw the club pick up no major silverware, knocked out of the League Cup by Palace, Champions League by Basel and FA Cup by Liverpool.
  • Sir Alex's blood boils when Nani is sent off in the 2012-13 Champions League last 16 match against Real Madrid. United were knocked out at this stage.
  • The club seal a 20th league title and 13th for Sir Alex in 2012-13, this turns out to be the manager's last.
  • During Sir Alex Ferguson's time at Manchester United, he has won 13 league titles, 3 European titles, 5 FA Cups and 4 League Cups.
The final instalment of our tribute to Sir Alex's time at Man Utd looks at the years 2006-2013.

Meanwhile, Roberto Martinez is the strong favourite to be the next Everton manager amid Moyes' expected departure to Old Trafford.

The Wigan boss has consistently headed the market with Moyes' future increasing under doubt as he has failed to extend his contract, which expires this summer.

However, the Spaniard, whose current side are 1/4 for relegation, has been backed into 8/11 for the post with Sky Bet while other names in contention include Phil Neville (12/1), Neil Lennon (16/1) and Martin O'Neill (16/1).

Spicer added: "Martinez was already favourite at marginally odds-on and seems to be facing little opposition for the post, with Phil Neville his next closest contender at 12/1."

Manchester United have also been eased out by Sky Bet to joint 15/8 favourites with Manchester City for next season's Premier League title while away from football, many bookies have slashed Sir Alex's odds to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, with Sky Bet making him 5/4 favourite ahead of 5/2 Andy Murray.

Click for Sky Bet's 'next Everton manager' market