The Football Association today embarked on a recruitment drive to find a replacement for Steve McClaren, who was sacked after England’s failure to qualify for Euro 2008.
“We are currently reviewing an exhaustive list of all those that believe they could do a better job,” said Brian Barwick, FA Chief Executive. “In fact we started just after the final whistle yesterday by interviewing some of the fans leaving Wembley Stadium.”
Radio phone-in shows have been inundated with people offering suggestions about who should be the replacement for McClaren. Predictably bookmakers have made Jose Mourinho and Martin O’Neil favourites to take the job, but at 4 to 1 is ‘Paul from Formby’ a caller to a Radio 5 phone-in who had watched the match in his local pub.
“’Paul from Formby’ talked a lot of sense, certainly as much we ever hear from any football manager,” said Mick Billingsworth an Odds Compiler at William Hill. “He expressed succinctly, if perhaps a little coarsely, what he thought were the problems with the English game. It’s likely he was cut off mid-call so as not to give too much information to competing nations.”
‘Paul from Formby’ has an extensive track record in football phone-in management at all levels of the English game and has become a familiar fixture on Saturday evenings.
“We know many people agree with the views of ‘Paul from Formby’ who is certainly never frightened of giving an opinion on a wide range of issues,” said Mr Barwick. “However we won’t have finalised our choice of manager until The Sun tells us who to give the job to.”
Mick Billingsworth said that whilst other English candidates may have a higher profile than Paul, none had proven themselves as comprehensively in international competition.
“We have reduced his odds sharply simply because Paul always gives a great performance whether it be a domestic match or even a tense Champions League away game in the knock-out stages,” said Billingsworth. “He always knows the right playing formation and team line-up for every occasion, against all opposition, complete with a comprehensive post-match assessment of every player's ability. The FA will realise this insight is too value to be restricted to the pub.”
However the FA have said that they had no need to be rushed into a decision over a replacement manager for the national team.
“The next England match is not until March,” said the FA Chief Executive. “We need that time to search through some CDs we have received, containing the details of 25 million people more qualified than Steve McClaren.”
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