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England prepare to name McClaren

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Steve McClaren's appointment as the next England manager is set to be confirmed by the Football Association. The FA's board began meeting at its Soho Square headquarters in London at 1030 BST to discuss the successor to current coach Sven-Goran Eriksson.


The Middlesbrough manager's name will be recommended to the board by the selection panel, the BBC has learned.


And McClaren, 45, has left his North Yorkshire home and is believed to be heading for the capital.


Bolton boss Sam Allardyce - who was also in the running for the job - has said he expects to miss out.


McClaren failed to come out for the post-match interviews after his Middlesbrough side's 1-1 draw at Allardyce's Bolton on Wednesday.


Allardyce did appear and he said: "I'm going to be disappointed."


And then when asked who he thought would succeed Sven-Goran Eriksson, he answered: "Steve McClaren."


Eriksson will leave his post as England manager after the 2006 World Cup in Germany.


Allardyce added: "I've had nothing (from the FA) but you get the sense and the feeling.


"The media have been going that way day-by-day and in the end you think that that is going to be the case.


"It isn't official yet but I'd expect that will probably be the selection on Thursday."


Allardyce has made no secret of his desire for the England job and with McClaren set to get the nod ahead of him, he said: "Without any question of a doubt it will be one of the biggest disappointments of my life."


McClaren, who has led Boro to the Uefa Cup final, has worked closely as one of Eriksson's assistants during the Swede's tenure as manager of the national team.


And Eriksson paid a glowing tribute ahead of his expected unveiling.


"He's extremely good. As a coach, perfect every time," said Eriksson.


"Every time we are together, after dinner, all the coaches sit and discuss football for one or two hours - what we are going to do tomorrow, the next squad or the next team.


"Everyone has their opinion. Because when I took this job I said I didn't want to have people around me who just say 'yes'.


"I want people to have opinions... and he's clever."


Eriksson was also unfazed by the prospect of the possibility of his successor being in the dug-out with him at the World Cup.


"If that happened of course it would be OK," added Eriksson.


The FA insisted it would make a decision on its choice before the finals in Germany and has moved swiftly after the embarrassing episode involving Luiz Felipe Scolari last week.


It appeared the Brazilian had been offered the job only to pull out citing media intrusion as his reason.


McClaren heightened speculation he would be named England manager when he sent out his assistant Steve Round to answer the media's questions after the draw at Bolton.


"Steve has not said anything to us," said Round.


"As far as I am aware he will be in for training on Thursday and preparing for Sunday's match against Fulham and the Uefa Cup final next Wednesday."



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