PAUL Heckingbottom is believed to be out of the reckoning for the City hot seat.

The former Bantams defender became the bookies favourite for the vacant head coach role following his sacking at neighbours Leeds United.

But the T&A understands that Heckingbottom does not want an immediate return to management and plans to take some time out before considering his next position.

The 40-year-old, who had three spells as a player at Valley Parade, led Barnsley to League One promotion and the Football League Trophy in 2016 with an attacking brand of football.

Having stepped up to the Tykes helm after being in charge of their development squad, he carved out a reputation for bringing on young players.

After keeping Barnsley up in their first season back in the Championship, he was snapped up by Leeds last February but was dismissed after just 16 games at Elland Road after failing to get near the play-offs.

His qualities appear to fit the bill for the type of head coach wanted by City's owners, who are understood to have had talks with Heckingbottom.

A former City player of the year, he would have been a popular choice among many fans as the search to find a successor to Simon Grayson enters a second month.

And this week’s departure of Darren Ferguson from his post as Doncaster boss means another Yorkshire club are currently without a manager along with Leeds and Barnsley, who look set to appoint Daniel Stendel.

Former City chief Stuart McCall was installed as bookies favourite to take over from his fellow Scot, who resigned following differences with the board.

The Bantams hierarchy have always been insistent that they would not be rushed into making an appointment.

With head of recruitment Greg Abbott back at work after prostate cancer surgery, the club have already made two signings in Joe Riley and Josh Wright.

It remains to be seen whether out-of-contract senior players Colin Doyle and Tim Dieng sign new deals, with the club “quite relaxed” about the situation. Negotiations are believed to be on-going with the pair.

Meanwhile, Barnsley are reportedly closing in on the appointment of German Stendel as their next boss.

The 44-year-old, who was sacked as Hanover manager in March 2017, has emerged as the clear favourite to take over from Portugeuse Jose Morais.

Grant McCann, who has been linked with the Bantams post, had previously been tipped to take over at Oakwell.