The Scot, who took over as caretaker when Martin O'Neill resigned five days before the start of the season, will go back to his role as reserve team-manager when Gerard Houllier comes in. Downing, however, made it clear that the players have appreciated his efforts.
"He's done a very, very good job in the circumstances he was given with the first team. Obviously he's got a lot of respect here. He's brought a lot of young players through - a load who are still here and a load who have left. He's got a good reputation and knowing Kev, he'll just get on with his job whether he's dealing with the first team or whether he's going back to the reserves. He's done really well for us up to now. I think he's an ultra-professional."