BURY AFC have whittled their managerial hunt down to a final shortlist of eight.

In all, the Shakers’ phoenix club had more than 700 applications for the vacant post, 100 with relevant experience.

Some interviews, led by chairman Chris Murray, have already been held with the club looking to have someone in place when they receive confirmation from the North West Counties League on where they will be placed in their structure from next season.

The ‘new Shakers’ are working towards a September start in the ninth or 10th tier with it possible that some supporters will be allowed in grounds by that point.

“We’ve brought in a number of people with relevant experience to help us, including managers, former players, board members of other clubs and agents,” a Bury AFC update to members on their managerial hunt read.

“The standard of the shortlist is high. Some applicants were well-qualified or well-known but inexperienced at the level we will be playing at, which is flattering but we need to make a decision with our head, not our hearts.”

A fan-owned community benefit society working to ensure there is football played in the name of Bury next season, the Shakers recently passed 500 members, those who have signed up able to have a say in future decisions.

A verdict is expected soon on Steve Dale’s application for Bury FC to play in the National League, the top two tiers of non-league, next season.

A report in The Sun states Dale has been asked for clarification on certain aspects of his submission and given seven days to respond.  

He has previously claimed that he is willing to step aside as chairman to allow the two-time FA Cup winners to return to action from next season.