Interim boss Gareth Southgate handed the full-time England manager's job as FA plumps for safe option

46-year-old gets the job on a permanent basis after steering side to two wins and a draw in World Cup qualifying games as interim boss

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 November, 2016, 11:46pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 01 December, 2016, 9:22am

Gareth Southgate will lead England towards the 2018 World Cup and 2020 European Championship after being appointed permanent manager of the national soccer team by the FA on Wednesday.

The 46-year-old succeeds Sam Allardyce who departed 67 days into his reign after being caught up in a newspaper sting.

In a statement released after a meeting of the Football Association board at St George’s Park (England’s training centre), the FA said the former England defender had agreed to a four-year contract.

Southgate, who was in charge of England’s under 21s for 32 games, has overseen two wins and a draw in the three World Cup qualifying games he has overseen as interim manager, leaving England top of the group. He also saw his side draw with Spain.

“I am extremely proud to be appointed England manager. However, I’m also conscious that getting the job is one thing, now I want to do the job successfully,” the former Crystal Palace, Aston Villa and Middlesbrough player said.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with the players over these past four games and I think there’s huge potential.

“For me, the hard work starts now.”

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Martin Glenn, the FA chief executive, said Southgate’s previous experience as coach of the Under-21 side was invaluable.

“He’s obviously somebody we know well but it’s his understanding of international football and the development set-up at St George’s Park that is important,” said Glenn.

“He performed extremely well during the four games he was in temporary charge and he impressed us during a tough interview process.

“Gareth is a great ambassador for what the FA stands for, he’s a very good football tactician and a leader but beneath that he’s a winner and that’s an important part of the job.”

Southgate’s first match in permanent charge will be away to Germany in a friendly in March, followed by a World Cup qualifier at home to Lithuania later that month.

Reuters, Agence France-Presse