Newcastle expect to complete the process of identifying potential replacements for Alan Pardew within the next 48 hours.
It is understood that managing director Lee Charnley and chief scout Graham Carr are drawing up a list of around 10 potential candidates to provide the basis for discussions early next week.
That list will then be whittled down to the men the pair believe can fulfil the role of head coach at St James' Park - and, perhaps more importantly, whether or not they are available, either immediately or at some point in the near future, and would work within the 'continental' model the club has adopted.
Sources on Tyneside insist that no-one has yet been approached and certainly no offers have been made.
However, it is understood that among the names which will be considered at this early stage are St Etienne's Christophe Galtier, former Mainz boss Thomas Tuchel, Derby's Steve McClaren, Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe and ex-England chief Glenn Hoddle.
Galtier has already indicated that he will not walk out on his current employers this season, while Tuchel is currently taking a sabbatical and McClaren, who signed a new three-year deal last summer, has distanced himself from the vacancy.
However, those details and possible resolutions will form part of the early discussions, and what is clear is that Charnley and Carr, who are being given free rein by owner Mike Ashley, will not appoint in haste.
In the circumstances, Pardew's assistant John Carver - he was criticised by some fans for fielding a weakened side for Saturday's 1-0 FA Cup third-round defeat by Leicester, although later insisted it was as a result of injuries and fatigue - and first-team coach Steve Stone are likely to remain in charge for next weekend's Premier League trip to Chelsea.
The Magpies currently sit in 10th place in the table, with 27 points from their opening 20 fixtures, and the top-10 finish Ashley set as the minimum requirement for the season is now their only remaining objective.