Ruud Dokter has revealed a series of potential successors to Giovanni Trapattoni as Republic of Ireland manager have been sounded out.
Dutchman Dokter, the Football Association of Ireland's high performance director, and former international Ray Houghton, have been charged with the task of finding the man to replace the 74-year-old Italian, who parted company with Ireland last month after five-and-a-half years in charge.
Under-21s boss Noel King will lead the Republic into their remaining World Cup qualifiers against Germany and Kazakhstan, and he will do so with the hunt for a new manager ongoing.
Dokter was reluctant to discuss the matter as he spoke to the media in Malahide on Wednesday morning, where he has been assisting King this week, but when asked about the process, he said: "We are doing it together.
"There has been a lot of interest and yes, we have talked to some people, and that's actually all I want to say about it because it's an ongoing process."
Asked if that process could take some time, Dokter replied: "Yes."
Martin O'Neill was swiftly installed as the bookmakers' favourite even before Trapattoni's demise, while former manager Mick McCarthy and his captain Roy Keane have also been tipped to take over.
Gerard Houllier's odds also tumbled this week as the search continued, but there is no immediate urgency, with Ireland's hopes of making it to Brazil next summer over and the new qualifying campaign not due to start until September next year.
Asked what qualities he and Houghton were looking for in Trapattoni's replacement, Dokter said: "A good manager for the senior team. That's all I want to say about it."
Dokter, King and their players were due to fly to Cologne for Friday night's clash with the Germans on Wednesday afternoon, but they did so with a question mark hanging over skipper Robbie Keane.
The 33-year-old striker sat out of training after taking a kick to the ankle, although goalkeeping coach Alan Kelly later insisted he is not a major doubt for the game at the RheinEnergieStadion.
Kelly said: "Hopefully, we will see how it goes. We have got to fly out there now and it is being monitored and we will make that assessment come Thursday and Friday.
"That's the precaution that we would take normally with anybody who has got something."