FA mull shake-up after Pearce exit confirmed

Frank Dalleres
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FOOTBALL Association boss David Bernstein has hinted at an overhaul of the England coaching set-up after Under-21 manager Stuart Pearce’s sacking was confirmed yesterday.

Pearce, who had been in charge since 2007, was told his contract would not be renewed when it expires this month following the Under-21s’ disastrous European Championship.

The former England left-back’s job was under intense scrutiny before they even qualified, as City A.M. reported in October, and three defeats sealed his fate.

Ex-Middlesbrough boss Gareth Southgate was the early favourite to succeed Pearce last night, closely followed by former England senior coach Glenn Hoddle.

Hoddle, who was considered for the top job before the FA appointed Roy Hodgson last year, is currently running an academy in Spain and has indicated he would not be happy to work under the current structure.

Bernstein left the door open for a shake-up yesterday, saying: “It is important the FA now considers the best approach for the role of Under-21 coach and how this works best within the overall England structure before making any new appointment.”

He added: “I’d like to thank Stuart Pearce for his hard work. Nobody can doubt his commitment to the job throughout his time as U21 coach.”