England players have little faith in English coaches

LONDON • England's senior players will actively encourage the appointment of a foreign manager as they consider the list of English candidates, with Glenn Hoddle increasingly prominent in the Football Association's thinking, to be underwhelming.

The search for the new manager will begin when the FA's chief executive, Martin Glenn, the technical director, Dan Ashworth, and the vice-chairman, David Gill, meet at St George's Park to work out their strategy now that Gareth Southgate has ruled himself out of taking the job on an interim basis.

Hoddle is being considered for the role the FA initially assumed Southgate would accept and Ashworth will meet Scott Parker for exploratory talks in the next few days as part of a wider search about involving former England players in the new regime.

The FA was taken by surprise by Southgate's decision but the disappointment may be offset by the disclosure that England's players were largely unenthused by the possibility of the former Middlesbrough manager replacing Roy Hodgson.

Glenn has made it clear that he will consult England's captain, Wayne Rooney, as well as experienced players such as Joe Hart, James Milner and Gary Cahill, and the preference in the dressing room would be for a non-Englishman if the alternative comes from a list featuring Sam Allardyce, Alan Pardew, Steve Bruce and Eddie Howe.

While the decision will rest with the three FA executives, it clearly counts against the English candidates - at a time when players' opinions seem to matter more than ever - that there is no palpable support for any of them.

The FA's first consideration will be to explore the possibility of appointing an interim manager for up to a year, if Arsene Wenger indicates that he would be willing to take the job once his contract at Arsenal expires at the end of the 2016-17 season.

The chances of that happening, however, are diminishing.

That makes it far more likely the FA will prefer a quicker appointment, with Laurent Blanc, Slaven Bilic and Jurgen Klinsmann among the other names under consideration to lead England into their World Cup 2018 qualifying campaign.

Meanwhile, the FA will launch its "definitive review" of what went wrong in Euro 2016 and why there is a pattern of players excelling for their clubs but being unable to maintain that form in England's colours.

"We had quite a good squad. We went out there and played OK in the first three games then we were terrible in the fourth.

"I think everybody knows that and on behalf of the FA I would like to say sorry. The fans were brilliant out there, but on the day we froze," Greg Dyke, the departing FA chairman, said.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 02, 2016, with the headline 'England players have little faith in English coaches'. Print Edition | Subscribe