Saturday 17 February 2018

England fans in disbelief as Gareth Southgate is installed as favourite to replace Roy Hodgson

Gareth Southgate has been installed as favourite to replace Roy Hodgson
Gareth Southgate has been installed as favourite to replace Roy Hodgson

Mark Ogden

Roy Hodgson has resigned as England manager following their humiliating Euro 2016 elimination against Iceland, with Gareth Southgate and Gary Neville the leading contenders to replace the 68-year-old.

Having seen his team lose 2-1 to the Cinderella team of France 2016 in Nice, Hodgson delivered a statement in a post-match press conference without taking questions about the result.

Flanked by his assistants, Neville and Ray Lewington, the former Liverpool, Inter Milan and Fulham manager admitted he could not continue in the job following such an embarrassing result.

“I'm extremely disappointed of course about tonight's result and ultimately our exit from the competition,” Hodgson said. “We haven't progressed as far as I thought we were capable of, and that's obviously not acceptable.

“I'm actually proud of the work my coaching staff and I have achieved over our time at the helm of England.

“The transition from the squad, whose average age was 30, to now being the youngest in the tournament is both remarkable and exciting for the future of English football.

“I would have loved to stay on for another two years. However, I am pragmatic and I know we are in the results business.

“My contract was always up after the Euros, so now is the time for someone else to oversee the progress of this young, hungry and extremely talented group of players.

“They have been fantastic and have done everything that has been asked of them.

“When I arrived I was told players didn't turn up to play for their country or that they pulled out at the last minute. I have not seen any of that. These players love to play for their country and their commitment has been unquestioned.”

Hodgson added that Neville and Lewington will follow him out of the job, although Neville may yet return as his successor.

“Ray and Gary arrived with me as part of my coaching team and will leave with me,” Hodgson said. “I'd like to thank them for their dedicated support and for the major part they've played in our team preparation.

“Finally I'd like to thank all the support start, players, the FA and of course the fans. It's been a fantastic journey, these four years, and it's one I'll look back on or remember with pride.

“I'm sorry it's had to end this way with another exit from the tournament. These things happen.

“All I can do is wish everybody all the very best and hope that you will still be able to see an England team in a final of a major tournament fairly soon.

“We've been unable to deliver. Thank you very much.”

Hodgson is expected to speak to the media before England depart their Euro 2016 base in Chantilly on Tuesday, with FA chief executive Martin Glenn also due to be in attendance.

Sunderland manager Sam Allardyce and Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew are also likely to be considered as Hodgson’s successor, but the FA will not restrict the search to an Englishman.

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Independent News Service

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