No 'two-man race'
Roy Hodgson was never involved in a battle to become the new England manager and was identified as the prime candidate one month ago.
Last Updated: 01/05/12 5:02pm
Roy Hodgson was never involved in a 'two-man race' to become the new England manager and was identified as the prime candidate one month ago, the Football Association has confirmed.
The West Brom head coach was on Tuesday appointed on a four-year contract after holding talks at Wembley over the past 48 hours, with the FA having ruled out other candidates at the end of March.
There has been some criticism of the FA's decision to go for Hodgson ahead of Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp, who was the runaway favourite for the role after Fabio Capello resigned in February.
The FA has also come under scrutiny for its failure to appoint a new manager until so close to this summer's European Championship, which begins in Poland and Ukraine on 8th June.
But the governing body's chairman, David Bernstein, has insisted that, after considering other unnamed candidates, Hodgson was found to be the main man approximately four weeks ago and he thinks the appointment has come with perfect timing.
At a media conference to unveil Hodgson, Bernstein said when asked at what point Redknapp was ruled out: "I'm not commenting on any discounting of him or anybody else.
"I just repeat, this was not a two-man race."
Hodgson will remain as West Brom head coach for the club's remaining two games of the season before then stepping up plans for Euro 2012.
Bernstein has been in discussions with the Baggies' chairman, Jeremy Peace, over past weeks and reached an agreement on when the official pursuit of Hodgson would become public knowledge.
"We thought it was too early and we felt it would disrupt West Brom's season," said Bernstein when explaining why the FA waited to name Hodgson.