Former Everton midfielder Lee Carsley is set to replace Aidy Boothroyd as head coach of England’s Under-21s.
The Under-21 side have been without a permanent manager since April, after a poor showing at the European Championships led to Boothroyd stepping down. It’s a significant role, and there had been plenty of speculation over who the next boss would be.
Though still only 47, Carsley has an extensive coaching CV under his belt. He began taking his coaching badges while still playing for Everton in 2008, and was appointed head coach of Coventry’s under-18s after retiring as a player in 2011.
He’s held various academy roles with Coventry, Manchester City and Brentford while also dabbling in senior management now and again – he was briefly Brentford’s permanent head coach before the appointment of Dean Smith.
Carsley has also worked extensively within the England set-up and is highly-rated by Gareth Southgate. He is currently manager of the under-20s, but looks set to be promoted less than a year after taking on that role.
The role of England Under-21s manager doesn’t come easily. The FA tend to choose carefully, given there is a realistic chance whoever they appoint will end up in charge of the first-team at some stage.
It’s what gave Southgate his start, stepping in on an interim basis following Sam Allardyce’s departure and doing enough to earn the job on a permanent basis. He’s since led England to a World Cup semi-final and the final of Euro 2020 – two of the best major tournament showings in their history.
As a player, Carsley made 548 appearances for Everton, Derby, Blackburn, Coventry and Birmingham, and was a fixture of the Premier League all throughout the early 2000s.