Gavin Skelton says he will tomorrow turn up for work fully prepared to lead Carlisle United into a third game if the board decide they need more time in their boss hunt.

The Blues are believed to be narrowing down their search for a new “head coach” but there are still no signs of when a decision will be made.

A shortlist of candidates is likely to be clearer this week as United build up to next Saturday’s trip to Forest Green in the FA Cup second round.

Former Newcastle under-23 coach Neil Redfearn emerged over the weekend as the new bookies’ favourite with Robbie Stockdale, the former Hibs No2, also a mover in the market.

A more left-field applicant, according to reports in Sweden, could also be Ian Burchnall, who is set to leave his post as head coach of Ostersunds, while Michael Bridges remains high in the betting.

Director of football David Holdsworth has been leading the process so far for the club.

Caretaker manager Skelton, who saw United draw 0-0 with Cambridge on Saturday, says he is paying little attention to the speculation and will continue to get on with the job in hand.

He also said it was “still the case” that he had not submitted his own CV for the position.

Skelton said: “In terms of [me] looking at Forest Green, it’s better to be prepared than not being prepared, and that’s how I think you work.

“I’ll just carry on as normal, the same as last week. We will reflect on the game and [today] see how the land lies.

“With the speculation, I do block it out. It’s something I never get involved in and I’m not on social media.

“I speak to my dad most days on the way back from training and he says this has happened, this has happened…I’m like, ‘Dad, I don’t know!’

“They think I’m batting it back but I genuinely crack on. When the club has something to tell me, they’ll tell me. I’m an employee.”

United have not commented on the process since last Monday.

Skelton added: “There’s a process going on, you get on with your job and you prepare the players to the best of your ability.

“Last week when they were going release a statement, they notified me before it went out and that’s fine.

“At least I knew what was going out. Anything that needs saying, they’re in contact with me and letting me know.”

Skelton, meanwhile, admitted Saturday’s stalemate was “not a classic” as United slipped a place to fourth bottom.

The Cumbrian did praise his side’s defensive efforts and in particular the showing of Jon Mellish, who came in for the dropped Byron Webster.

But he also said United had not “gambled” enough in the Cambridge penalty area.

Skelton added: “It’s funny, if you’re top half, top end, you win those games 1-0 because you have that belief.

“We almost thought, ‘Do we stick or twist? There’s a nervousness right around the place, we can’t hide behind that fact.

“We spoke about it all week – get out, quick start, get the crowd behind us. Sometimes you want the crowd to get behind you but you’ve got to give them something to buy into.

“There were spells where we had no momentum right through the game which was frustrating.

“I thought we were comfortable in possession but we moved it too slow. We wanted to move it quicker, keep moving them, get our wide players on it but they [Cambridge] were quite compact and sat behind the ball which made it difficult.

“It’s a point and a clean sheet, I thought Jon Mellish did excellently and that’s pleasing. I thought Ryan Loft and Canice Carroll were impressive. Was it a fantastic performance? No.”

Skelton said Jack Bridge missed the game with a stomach upset while Elias Sorensen was being assessed by the club doctor at parent club Newcastle after suffering from a migraine.