SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 21: Alastair Clarkson, coach of the Hawks, looks on during the round 14 AFL match between the Sydney Swans and the Hawthorn Hawks at the Sydney Cricket Ground on June 21, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Coaching great Alastair Clarkson is understood to be interested in a potential position with Essendon as the former Hawks mentor weighs up his next move.

The 54-year-old has been in discussions with both North Melbourne and GWS in recent weeks as both clubs look to fill their senior coaching vacancies.

Clarkson has been seen as the top priority for both the Giants and Roos, with the latter reportedly placing all their attention on the four-time premiership coach.

The Giants have worked through a process with several assistants from across the competition, with Melbourne's Adem Yze seen as the likely candidate to succeed Leon Cameron as GWS' senior coach.

Now, per SEN's Gerard Whateley, the Giants have dropped out of the race for Clarkson, leaving Yze, GWS caretaker coach Mark McVeigh and Richmond assistant Adam Kingsley as the remaining contenders for the New South Wales job.

It is understood that Clarkson is keen to remain in Victoria.

Reported interest from Essendon has only sparked panic for North Melbourne, who are now in danger of missing their sole coaching target for 2023.

Monday's frantic fallout at Tullamarine not only sparked concern around senior coach Ben Rutten's position with the Bombers, but raised links to Clarkson potentially taking over the reins at the struggling Victorian powerhouse.

It seems as thought the Bombers could pull the pin on Rutten's tenure one game shy of two seasons should Clarkson rubber-stamp a move to Bomberland.

In an update that will only compound Rutten's chances of being shown the door, Clarkson has reportedly shown some level of intrigue into a stunning partnership with Essendon.

According to News Corp, Clarkson's manager James Henderson has indicated his client has "strong interest" in the job should it be made available.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 15: Alastair Clarkson, Senior Coach of the Hawks looks on during the 2017 AFL round 17 match between the Geelong Cats and the Hawthorn Hawks at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on July 15, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Clarkson has previously flagged a desire to lead a list that could contend in the years ahead, while also expressing touching on the tempting options to take on a role with one of the AFL's biggest clubs in the likes of Collingwood and Carlton.

Having only added youth to a list that managed a top-eight finish in 2021, the Bombers could be in the finals frame as early as next season should they have someone of Clarkson's stature behind the wheel.

Essendon's advances come after president Paul Brasher resigned from his post, seeing David Barham succeed as the Bombers' boss and begin an external review.

Part of the change has also raised concerns around Rutten's position, with members of the board beginning to turn their attention to Clarkson.

His pending decision comes at a peculiar time for both the Bombers and Roos, with Clarkson initially tipped to be announced as the new coach of North Melbourne's as early as this week prior to the board spill at Essendon.

Essendon are yet to speak on Rutten's tenure, with the former Adelaide defender touted to coach his side's Round 23 match against Richmond this weekend.