FORMER international and Premier League manager Nigel Worthington is expected to take charge of York City today.

The Press understands that Worthington, whose last job saw him take charge of Northern Ireland, will replace Gary Mills, whose two-and-a-half year tenure came to an end when he was sacked following Saturday’s 2-0 home defeat to Bradford.

City officials would not confirm Worthington’s appointment last night, but sources close to The Press have confirmed he is the new man while other supposed candidates Graham Westley, Keith Curle and Phil Brown were never under consideration.

On the club’s search for a successor to Mills, communications director Sophie Hicks said: “We are looking for somebody to make an immediate impact and get the necessary points we need to maintain our League status. We would also hope that person would have the right level of experience in the Football League.”

Former Notts County, Sheffield Wednesday and Leeds left-back Worthington started his managerial career with Blackpool in 1997.

He then took over at Norwich in December 2000 and steered the Canaries into the Premier League in 2004 but, following relegation after one season at football’s top table, he later left Carrow Road in 2006.

The Ballymena-born 51-year-old, who won 66 caps for his country as a player, spent four years in charge of Northern Ireland before stepping down in October 2011 with the highlight a third-place finish in their Euro 2008 qualifying group.

Prior to being given his chance on the international stage, Worthington also helped Leicester stave off the threat of relegation from the Championship during a brief stint as caretaker manager at the end of the 2006/7 season – an entry on his CV that will not have gone unnoticed by his expected new employers as they bid to preserve their club’s Football League status.

Hicks, meanwhile, admitted that relieving last season’s double-winning Wembley manager Mills of his duties on Saturday night was a tough experience, saying: “The board have had a close relationship with Gary Mills since his appointment and this was clearly a very, very difficult decision, but we have to now focus on the job of securing a new manager.”

The club will be honouring the remainder of Mills’ contract, which was due to expire next summer. City coaches Des Lyttle and Paul Musselwhite have also left the club, while assistant-boss Darron Gee remains in post.

Worthington is in line to become the Minstermen’s seventh manager in less than ten years since the 2003 dismissal of Terry Dolan.

Player-boss Chris Brass, Viv Busby, Billy McEwan, Colin Walker, Martin Foyle and Mills have all filled the Bootham Crescent hot-seat since, while the likes of Neil Redfearn, Andy Porter and Steve Torpey have also had stints in caretaker charge.