St Mirren have held talks with Billy Davies about their vacant manager's position.

Saints chairman Gordon Scott is on the hunt for a new boss after sacking Alex Rae on Sunday.

Now he has turned to former Derby and Nottingham Forest boss Davies.

Scott met the 52-year-old - who has been out of work since being sacked by Forest in March 2014 - on Tuesday afternoon but insists he has not yet offered the former Buddies midfielder the post.

He told Press Association Sport: "We've had a conversation with Billy but no more. It's still at an early stage but we have had a lot of good applications in so far.

"I haven't been in the stadium today to check but I reckon there is about 25 to 30 sitting there to be looked at.

"We had hoped to have someone in place by the time of the Falkirk game on October 1 but that is looking unlikely now.

"We will try and get things completed as soon as we can but it's important we get this decision right."

Former Rangers and Motherwell player Davies spent three years with the Paisley outfit after signing in 1987.

Youth team boss Allan McManus has been placed in temporary charge and will take the team for Saturday's trip to Dunfermline.

Rae was appointed last December but was sacked after his side failed to win any of their opening six games of the season, leaving the Saints sitting bottom of the Ladbrokes Championship.

Saturday’s 1-1 draw at part-time side Dumbarton proved to be the final straw for Rae.

The former Rangers midfielder guided the Saints to a comfortable mid-table finish last season, after taking over from Ian Murray in December with the team hovering near the foot of the table.

Hopes were high that he could oversee a promotion challenge given a full season at the helm in Paisley and having had two transfer windows to bring in his own players.

However Saints are without a win since their final League Cup game against Edinburgh City in July. Failure to beat teams with less resources than the Paisley side such as Renfrewshire rivals Morton, Ayr United and Dumbarton led to significant supporter unrest.

Since Danny Lennon departed in May 2014, St Mirren have had Tommy Craig, Gary Teale, Ian Murray and Rae at the helm; Rae’s tenure of nine months is the longest in that time.

Former Saints boss Gus MacPherson is the other leading candidate according to bookmakers.

The Queen’s Park boss second favourite behind Davies to return to Paisley where he spent six and a half years in charge between 2003 and 2010.

However MacPherson told our sister paper The Herald on Monday that rumours linking him with the vacant managerial post are “pure speculation”.