Widnes Vikings: League 1 coach ‘relieved of position’ amid speculation with vacant Championship job

Josh McAllister
Stuart Littler has been linked with the Widnes Vikings head coach role. Photo by PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo.

Stuart Littler has been linked with the Widnes Vikings head coach role. Photo by PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo.

League 1 side Oldham have announced the departure of head coach Stuart Littler, who has been linked with the vacant role at Widnes Vikings. 

Mike Ford will take over as interim head coach for the remainder of the League 1 campaign, supported by assistant Brendan Sheridan.

Oldham sit fifth on the League 1 table with nine wins from 14, with Littler having been appointed at the club in October 2021 on a two-year deal, succeeding Matt Diskin.

The ex-Ireland boss has been linked with the vacant Widnes Vikings role, with veteran coach John Kear having been sacked earlier in June following a poor run of results.

The appointment would see Littler reunite with Widnes’ head of operations Chris Hamilton, who joined the club from Oldham earlier this season.

Littler has been heavily linked in recent weeks.

Stuart Littler ‘relieved’ of Oldham position

A statement made by Oldham on Monday read: “We’d like to thank Stuart for all his hard work and commitment since joining the club.

“However, recent results and performances have been disappointing and fallen short of our expectations.

“We strongly believe that our playing group is more than capable of achieving our goal of promotion.

“With the play-offs fast approaching, the board felt that the time was right to take a new direction to give us the best possible chance of achieving that goal.”

The Vikings are expected to announce their new head coach imminently, with the Championship play-offs in sight.

Widnes currently sit seventh on the table with 10 wins, having won their last three games over Bradford, Keighley and most recently Whitehaven.

Littler also previously coached Swinton Lions in the Championship, appointed in 2017 following the departure of John Duffy.

He led a Matty Ashton inspired Swinton team to a ninth-placed finish in 2019 – the club’s highest ranking for 21 years.

Littler parted ways with the club in 2021 following a six-year association with the Heywood Road outfit.

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