Football

Pointless posturing from FA with Guardiola interest

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The FA have discussed Pep 'at length'. (©GettyImages)
The FA have discussed Pep 'at length'. (©GettyImages).

The thought of Harry Redknapp not becoming England manager in time for the European Championships this summer is difficult to comprehend, with the Tottenham boss the overwhelming favourite to succeed Fabio Capello.

Redknapp is the popular choice with both the public and - perhaps more importantly - the England players, with his work at White Hart Lane over the past two seasons having significantly enhanced his credentials.

It is seemingly only a matter of time, then, until the Football Association make an official approach for Redknapp, who is expected to accept the position when it is offered.

Redknapp fits the criteria for the FA in terms of experience but, of course, also in terms of nationality after David Bernstein outlined the appointment of somebody English - or British - as a priority.

It would, then, perhaps appear peculiar that both Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have been identified as candidates to replace Capello at the helm.

The Barcelona boss and his Real Madrid counterpart are the two finest managers of their generation, and The Guardian claims the FA have discussed the pair 'at length' during meetings regarding England's next coach.

Hiring either Guardiola or Mourinho would represent a significant coup for the FA, and serve as further evidence that they will do whatever it takes to appoint the best manager possible.

But surely adding Guardiola and Mourinho to the shortlist is an exercise in futility by Bernstein & Co, with popular and sensible opinion suggesting Redknapp is the ideal man for the position.

There is, of course, always a danger in having a shortlist for a job featuring the name of just one person, and there will be fears that Redknapp will already appear to be in a position of extreme power before even accepting the post.

But, with Redknapp unlikely to refuse the chance to lead his country, the 65-year-old will not be as forceful in salary negotiations as his predecessor.

Perhaps Guardiola or Mourinho managing England in the future is a possibility, but identifying them as candidates on this occasion is simply needless posturing by the FA when Redknapp's appointment is an inevitability.

There is no need or point in contemplating securing the services of these two managerial giants, and the FA must concentrate on ensuring Redknapp is in place for Euro 2012.

Bernstein will be wary of being seen to have an adverse affect on Tottenham's pursuit of glory this season, and will approach the situation carefully in order to ensure minimal damage is done to the north London club.

The comments of FA director of football development Sir Trevor Brooking claiming a new manger could be 'parachuted in' days before the Euros would seem to reinforce the likelihood of Redknapp being named manager.

This would, of course, allow Redknapp to finish his job with Spurs without too much distraction, although Daniel Levy will still be loath to lose his manager.

But the Spurs chairman will surely bow to the wishes of Redknapp - and request appropriate compensation - when the FA make their move, although Brooking says he and his colleagues will 'take [their] time'.

Securing the services of Guardiola or Mourinho would be mightily impressive, but making Redknapp England manager would be the sensible decision by the FA.

But English football's governing body has hardly garnered a reputation for being 'sensible'.

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Internationals
Football
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