FOOTBALL: Southgate appointed England manager

Gareth Southgate during a training session at St George's Park, Burton. Pic: Press Association
Gareth Southgate during a training session at St George's Park, Burton. Pic: Press Association

Gareth Southgate has been confirmed as the new England manager on a four-year deal.

The 46-year-old’s position was ratified during a Football Association board meeting.

Southgate has been in interim charge since replacing Sam Allardyce in September after the former manager left following just 67 days in charge after being caught up in a Daily Telegraph investigation into corruption in football.

Southgate was unbeaten in his four games as interim boss - winning two and drawing two - including this month’s win over Scotland which left England top of Group F as they bid to reach Russia 2018.

The FA must now look at the age group set ups with Under-20 manager Aidy Boothroyd having temporarily stepped up to replace Southgate with the Under-21s. Boothroyd won his two games in charge.

As late as September, while Allardyce was still in charge pf the senior side, Southgate - then Under-21 boss - said he did not feel ready for the senior job when it was available in the summer following Roy Hodgson’s exit after a dismal Euro 2016.

The FA will also discuss Southgate’s backroom team with the future of Chelsea coach Steve Holland on the table and reports suggest the 46-year-old will be handed a full-time role with the senior national side.

Southgate spoke to a five-man panel at St George’s Park last Monday after the end of his interim reign.

FA chairman Greg Clarke, chief executive Martin Glenn and technical director Dan Ashworth, former England player Graeme Le Saux and League Managers’ Association chairman Howard Wilkinson were all involved.

Glenn had previously confirmed Southgate was in a strong position and that the former Middlesbrough manager wanted the job.

During his brief tenure Southgate has already had to deal with controversy with captain Wayne Rooney pictured mingling with guests at The Grove, where England were based, during his free time following the 3-0 World Cup qualifying win over Scotland.

Newspaper reports suggested the skipper was drunk and made an unscheduled appearance at a wedding reception, with chief executive Glenn promising an investigation into the conduct of all players and staff during their free time.

It seems that the player’s representatives have been in contact with the FA and are assured no disciplinary action will be taken against him. The Manchester United striker denied he had been at a wedding, although he did apologise to Southgate and the FA.