HITC Sport understands Bristol City Under-23s coach Luke Williams is in the frame for Southend job.

Southend United are considering a move for highly-rated Bristol City Under-23s coach as they search for a new manager, HITC Sport understands from sources close to the club.

League One strugglers Southend are looking for a new manager after sacking Chris Powell last week following an alarming slump in form.

Powell was axed after overseeing a run of 11 games without a win and they lost again at the weekend against fellow strugglers Shrewsbury Town to leave them out of the relegation zone on goal difference.

The Shrimpers are understood to be ready to focus on developing young players in the future whether they stay in League One or are relegated to League Two and Williams has emerged on their radar due to his success working in youth football.

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Williams has previously worked in the youth set-ups of Leyton Orient, West Ham and Brighton and he is highly-regarded within coaching circles.

The 38-year-old joined Swindon Town as first-team coach in 2013 and had spells as caretaker manager before being handed the manager’s job on a permanent basis in January 2016.

He left Swindon at the end of the 2016/17 season, but he was quickly back in football after landing the Under-23s manager’s job at Bristol City in June 2017.

Williams has impressed in his role at Bristol City, helping develop a number of players into Lee Johnson’s first-team and his success has brought him to the attention of manager-less Southend.

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