Gary Neville will not return to England set-up under new manager Sam Allardyce
Gary Neville will not return to the England set-up as number two to new manager Sam Allardyce.
The Football Association’s three-man panel of technical director Dan Ashworth, chief executive Martin Glenn and vice-chairman David Gill told a board meeting on Thursday that Allardyce is their preferred candidate, and are now working on a compensation deal with Sunderland ahead of a formal appointment.
Allardyce will sign an initial two-year contract with the option of an extension if targets are met at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The FA are keen to team Allardyce with at least one former England player or a young coach who may be groomed to eventually succeed the 61-year-old.
Despite standing down from his position as first-team coach when Roy Hodgson and assistant Ray Lewington quit after England’s Euro 2016 last-16 defeat to Iceland, Neville had been installed as bookies' favourite to return as number two to Allardyce.
But Telegraph Sport can reveal there is no prospect of a Neville return even if he is asked and the FA and Allardyce will have to look elsewhere for his assistant.
Neville was appointed to Hodgson’s backroom staff in 2012 and spent four years with the national team, but is now considering his next move after a difficult spell in charge of Valencia and England’s failed Euro 2016 campaign.
The departures of both Lewington and Neville leaves two vacancies open under Allardyce in the England set-up, meaning he could bring in one of his own trusted allies and still leave space for an FA appointment.
Neil McDonald, Allardyce’s assistant at West Ham United and Blackburn Rovers, is currently out of work after being sacked by Blackpool at the end of last season.
Eddie Howe has been touted as a possible part-time member of Allardyce’s staff, but it is not certain he or Bournemouth are keen on the idea, while the FA are also considering ex-players such as Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard.