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Hodgson on brink of England job

April 30, 2012 -- Updated 1759 GMT (0159 HKT)
West Brom coach Roy Hodgson arrives at Wembley for talks about the vacant England job
West Brom coach Roy Hodgson arrives at Wembley for talks about the vacant England job
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • English FA in talks with Hodgson over vacant national team job
  • FA confirms they are speaking to only one candidate
  • Hodgson in charge of EPL side West Brom, who are tenth
  • Previous successful stints in charge of Switzerland, Finland and the UAE

(CNN) -- The race to become the next coach of the England national football team took a dramatic twist when the country's governing body announced it was in talks with West Bromwich Albion manager Roy Hodgson about the vacant position.

Tottenham Hotspur coach Harry Redknapp had been an overwhelming favorite to take a job that has been empty since former coach Fabio Capello controversially quit earlier this year.

Instead the English FA has turned to the former Switzerland, Finland and Liverpool coach who this season has taken West Brom to tenth in the Premier League.

The club agreed Sunday to allow the FA to approach Hodgson about the job.

Roy is the only manager we have approached
FA chairman David Bernstein

"Roy is the only manager we have approached and we remain on course to make an appointment within the timescale we set-out soon after Fabio Capello's departure," FA chairman David Bernstein said in an official statement.

"Further conversations will now take place with Roy and my Club England colleagues before any further announcements can be made."

According to British media reports Hodgson is currently locked in talks with the FA at Wembley Stadium over his possible appointment.

If Hodgson is hired it will come as a huge shock despite his many years of international experience.

Redknapp, who has taken Tottenham into the European Champions League and who currently sit fourth in the Premier League, had been embroiled in a tax evasion trial earlier in the year.

But when former Real Madrid coach Fabio Capello sensationally quit his post after an unspectacular spell in charge of England, Redknapp was cleared of any wrong doing and the position was seen as his to lose.

Roy is a proud Englishman and we can understand why he wants to speak to the FA
West Brom Chairman Jeremy Peace

Yet Hodgson has a wealth of international experience, having coached at Inter Milan. He has also excelled whilst taking charge of several national teams.

He took Switzerland to the 1994 World Cup finals, their first since 1966, and was in charge when they qualified for the 1996 European Championships.

But his form in English club football has been mixed. Spells in charge of both Blackburn Rovers and Liverpool ended badly. His successful time at West Brom has gone some way to rehabilitating the reputation of a coach who has largely been more appreciated in Europe than in England.

"Roy has done a fantastic job over the past 15 months and the fact the FA want to discuss the England role with him is testament to that," West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace said in a statement on the club's official website.

"Roy is a proud Englishman and we can understand why he wants to speak to the FA about this highly-prestigious managerial position."

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