Major Portsmouth promotion rivals set to splash cash to land man linked with Celtic, Charlton Athletic and Lincoln City

Oxford United are one point behind Pompey at the top of League One - and are now set to pay a 'hefty' package to land the highly-touted boss.

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Oxford United are set to name their successor to Liam Manning, after his exit for Bristol City.

Pompey’s promotion rivals are ready to make Mumbai City boss Des Buckingham their new head coach, according to reports.

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The U’s are said to be shelling out a 'pretty hefty compensation package’ to bring in the 38-year-old, who has been linked with a number of positions in England and Scotland in recent months.

Buckingham was touted to succeed Ange Postecoglou at Celtic in the summer, after the Aussies’ departure for Spurs.

According to The Sun’s Tom Barclay and a host of other reports, he is set to move to the Kassam Stadium, however.

That will mean a return to his old stomping ground for the man who played for Oxford at academy level, before joining their coaching staff at the age of 18.

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A number of names were in the frame for the Oxford post, with the side sitting one point behind Pompey in the League One table.

Notts County boss Luke Williams was among those fancied for the position, though the Magpies boss this week distanced himself from the role.

The appointment is expected to be confirmed in the next 24 hours, meaning the U’s will have their man at the helm for the trip to Cheltenham next week after the international break.

Craig Short has been in temporary charge, after Manning left the club after just seven months to step up to the Championship with Bristol City.

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Buckingham’s appointment is largely being viewed positively by fans of Pompey's major rivals to reach the second tier.

It’s been an unusual pathway for the coach, who went to New Zealand as Wellington Phoenix boss in 2014 - before stepping up to the manager role in 2017 at the age of just 31.

Buckingham briefly returned to England to oversee Stoke’s under-23 side but then went into New Zealand’s international set-up at under-20 and under-23 level, before working as assistant manager for the senior side.

He then helped Melbourne City to the double as assistant manager before going to India with Mumbai City. There Buckingham guided the side to the Indian Super League title this year.