The Football Association (FA) has confirmed that England Under-21 manager Stuart Pearce will take charge of the national team as a temporary replacement for Fabio Capello, who resigned from his post on Wednesday.
Pearce, who extended his tenure as U21 boss by signing a new two-year contract in July, will lead England out at Wembley when they take on the Netherlands in a friendly on 29 February. In turn, a caretaker manager will step in for Pearce as interim coach when the U21s host Belgium in Middlesbrough on the same date.
The 49-year-old former Nottingham Forest FC defender and Manchester City FC manager guided the U21s to the UEFA European Championship semi-finals in 2007 as well as the final, where they lost to Germany, in Sweden two years later. He has been in the job since February 2007.
In a hastily scheduled media conference on Thursday, FA chairman David Bernstein revealed that a shortlist of candidates for the permanent successor to Capello will be drawn up "as soon as we can" but stressed the importance of making "the right choice".
Capello tendered his resignation at a meeting involving Bernstein and general secretary Alex Horne at FA headquarters on Wednesday afternoon. An FA statement read: "The discussions focused on the FA board's decision to remove the England team captaincy from John Terry, and Fabio Capello's response through an Italian broadcast interview."
Capello had taken the helm in December 2007 following spells at AC Milan, Real Madrid CF, AS Roma and Juventus. He steered England to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, where they were eliminated by Germany in the round of 16, and to UEFA EURO 2012 as Group G winners.
After England's encounter with the Netherlands, they will have further friendlies against Norway on 26 May and Belgium on 2 June, before tackling France in their EURO opener on 11 June. Co-hosts Ukraine and Sweden complete Group D at the finals.
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