EXCLUSIVE By Editor Wayne Veysey| Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this

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Fulham have turned their attention to Stuart Gray after failing to land their first four manager targets, Football Insider sources understand.

The Championship club have made contact with the former Southampton, Sheffield Wednesday and Northampton boss, who has been out of working since leaving Hillsborough last June.

A Fulham source has told Football Insider that Gray is in pole position to succeed Kit Symons, who was sacked at the beginning of November.

The Cottagers have been rebuffed four times in the subsequent period, with Mark Warburton following Gary Rowett, Nigel Pearson and Steve Clarke by rejecting their advances.

Football Insider revealed on Tuesday that Fulham’s US-based owner Shahid Khan has been in to London this week to oversee the process following the series of recruitment setbacks.

Pakistan-born billionare Khan, who also owns the NFL Jacksonville Jaguars team, wants a new man in place by this weekend.

Collapsed talks: A deal to appoint Gary Rowett broke down last week

Collapsed talks: A deal to appoint Gary Rowett broke down last week

Khan wants to appoint a head coach-type figure who can work with transfer chief Mike Rigg rather than a traditional manager in the mould of Harry Redknapp or former Charlton and West Ham boss Alan Curbishley, who is advising caretaker Peter Grant.

As revealed by Football Insider, a deal with Pearson is dead in the water as his long-time assistants Steve Walsh and Craig Shakespeare are unwilling to quit Leicester for a pay cut.

Reading manager Steve Clarke had agreed the terms of a contract with the Londoners but the deal collapsed after he tried to renegotiate lucrative top-up bonuses.

Talks with Rowett broke down last Friday, while Rangers manager Warburton has distanced himself from the post.