Mike Buskens has ruled himself out of the running for the vacant coaching job at Cologne.

Buskens led Greuther Furth to their first promotion to the top flight this season, but was linked with a move back to his native North-Rhine Westphalia, where his family lives.

He was back in the area this weekend, prompting speculation he was negotiating with Cologne following their relegation to the second division, but last night, he told the Bild newspaper he is not interested.

"I am not available for the Cologne job," he stated.

Buskens' future at Furth is nevertheless unclear, given his desire to move closer to his family in the west of Germany.

He still has a year left to run on his contract with the Bavarian side, who, over more than a decade of finishing just one or two positions behind the top teams were always just missing out, but he has yet to make up his mind whether he will join them in the top flight.

"It is something quite special for us to win the second division with Furth," he said at the weekend. "I need a few days to gather my thoughts on what I will do and what will happen. I will make up my mind very soon."

Bayer Leverkusen are also understood to be monitoring the situation of the former Schalke caretaker-coach.