Grant McCann was emphatically the first choice of the Doncaster Rovers board as they selected their new manager, the Free Press understands.
McCann was unveiled as Darren Ferguson’s successor on Wednesday night and was set for his first training session with the Rovers squad on Thursday morning.
The former Peterborough United boss was part of a second round of interviews which took place on Monday, which also involved Stuart McCall and Gary Caldwell.
There was speculation that former Bradford boss McCall had rejected an offer from Rovers but such reports were wide of the mark.
McCann greatly impressed the Rovers board during his two interviews, according to a club source.
The 38-year-old is understood to have demonstrated extensive research into the Rovers squad, having rewatched most of the games from last season, and the board were convinced he would be in a position to hit the ground running in the role once appointed.
Rovers did not begin talks over terms with any other candidates and immediately sought to tie down McCann, who was heavily linked with the vacancy at neighbours Barnsley earlier in the month.
The former Northern Ireland international signed his contract with Rovers on Tuesday night.
“I cannot wait to get started,” McCann said.
“Doncaster are a club with real potential and ambition, and after meeting the chairman and chief executive am confident we can work together to get the club into the Championship and stay there.
“We have the makings of a successful season, with a good squad of players and backroom staff already in place to provide the foundations.
“Rovers are renowned in football as leaders off the pitch for our community and fan engagement work, and I am really excited to join a club with such a culture.”
McCann will prepare the squad for next week’s training camp in La Manga in Spain, ahead of the first friendly of pre-season at Alfreton Town next Saturday.
Rovers chairman David Blunt said: “We were impressed with the standard of candidates for the role, and put the shortlisted people through a rigorous selection process.
“Grant was our first choice as manager as soon as we had completed the interviews, having displayed a real passion for taking on the role and showing how he can lead the club into play-off contention.
“He is one of the most promising young coaches in football, which was shown in his time at Peterborough.
“His win ratio at Peterborough was 40 per cent, which was particularly impressive for his first role in management.”