Peter Beardsley is in line for a return to management with non-league side Hebburn Town, NewcastleWorld understands.
As a player, the 61-year-old former England international is recognised as one of the greatest players ever to pull on the black and white shirt, however he left his role coaching role at Newcastle United under a cloud, after allegations of racism and bullying.
Beardsley was later found guilty of using racist and abusive language towards academy players by the Football Association and banned from football.
The 61-year-old has not worked as a professional, or semi-professional coach in the men’s game or academy setup since January 2018.
And following the sacking of Kevin Bolam at the beginning of March, the Hornets look set to hand Beardsley his coaching return in the Northern Premier League Division One East.
Across two playing spells on Tyneside, the mercurial forward, who also played for Liverpool and Everton, scored 101 goals in 279 appearances before hanging up his boots in 1999.
Upon his retirement, Beardsley stepped into coaching, primarily at boyhood club Newcastle, before working his way up to youth team manager.
However, in March 2019, after 10 years in the role, Beardsley, having previously been suspended for 14 months, parted company with the Magpies following allegations of racism and bullying.
Later that year, Beardsley was found guilty by the FA on three counts of using racist and abusive language towards members of the under-23s squad.
As a result, the former England international was suspended from all football activity for 32 weeks, i.e. seven months.
In a statement released by Beardsley’s solicitors, he was “very surprised and disappointed by the decision of the Regulatory Commission” and felt “vindicated that the Commission has expressly found that he is not a racist.”
Since parting company with United, Beardsley has attempted to rebuild his reputation by setting up his own soccer school, which was last hosted at Newcastle Falcons’ Kingston Park during the October half-term.
It is understood Beardsley is the leading contender to take charge at non-league side Hebburn after interviews took place this week.
The South Tyneside outfit, who won the 2020 FA Vase, sit 12th in the table with five games left to play this season.