Endorsed by a growing number of English players, Harry Redknapp should move closer to becoming the new coach of the national team today when plans to recruit Fabio Capello’s replacement are finalized by the Football Association.
With Tottenham hitting unprecedented recent highs under Redknapp, FA executives meeting today in Wembley, England, will also consider alternative options if the widely respected manager cannot be pried away from White Hart Lane.
The groundswell of public support for Redknapp gathered after Capello quit on Wednesday in a dispute over fired captain John Terry, with the Italian plunging England’s preparations for June’s European Championship into turmoil.
Now the FA is swinging into line with the national mood by stating a preference for a homegrown coach and recognizing the widespread backing for Redknapp, whose club is third in the Premier League.
“We of course understand the feeling of the nation and supporters, fans of England are very important when it comes to choosing the right person for the job,” FA general secretary Alex Horne said Thursday. “But we have to sit down and look long-term and give ourselves as many options as are available. We owe it to ourselves to write up the job brief and make sure we sit down calmly and make sure we have an exhaustive list.”
Two of England’s most prominent players, Wayne Rooney and Rio Ferdinand, have led the calls on Twitter for the appointment of Redknapp.
“We need an English manager now, we don’t need anything else lost in translation,” Ferdinand said. “Harry Redknapp would be my choice by a distance.”
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