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John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

The candidates to replace Sam Allardyce as England manager

After just 67 days, Sam Allardyce has left his post as England manager. With The FA again looking for a new man to lead the national team, ESPN FC examines some potential contenders.

Gareth Southgate (bet365 odds to be named permanent manager: 7/4)

He will take the reins for England's next three World Cup qualifiers, against Malta, Slovenia and Scotland, as well as the November friendly with Spain. The former Middlesbrough manager has never looked like he could be the long-term option for the top job, though he will have the first chance to stake a claim to succeed Allardyce.

Southgate's teams qualified for the 2015 European Under-21 championships but exited at the group stage; the current group is on course to reach the 2017 competition. He has worked with the majority of the younger players in the current senior set-up but appears little more than a stopgap or last resort in the absence of any other candidates.

Steve Bruce (2/1)

Like Sunderland with Allardyce, Hull City were unhappy in the summer with the FA's unofficial approach to their manager. Bruce subsequently left the KCOM Stadium in July, not long after those discussions, after an additional dispute with the club's owners over transfer policy.

A once-in-a-lifetime chance looked gone, only to reappear with the demise of Allardyce, one of Bruce's closest friends in football. Whether the FA would choose someone with such an association to a manager with whom they have just parted ways is a significant question. Bruce has also been linked with a potential vacancy at Stoke, where Mark Hughes is struggling. 

Alan Pardew (6/1)

Pardew was not on the short list to replace Hodgson and barely mentioned in dispatches as Allardyce's candidacy developed. That came as a result of Crystal Palace's dreadful Premier League form from the start of 2016 until the end of last season, which saw them win just two league matches out of 20.

Alan Pardew has been in charge at Crystal Palace since 2015.

Reaching the FA Cup final, where his team were beaten by Manchester United, did not appear to increase Pardew's chances but recent form -- Palace have won their last three Premier League games -- has put the spring back into Pardew's step. That he shares a similarly brash style to Allardyce may affect his chances, however, with The FA in damage-limitation mode.

Eddie Howe (9/1)

Howe has been identified as a future manager of England or even the man to replace Arsene Wenger at Arsenal. His work ethic and commitment to attacking football continue to win admirers including Pep Guardiola, who said earlier this month -- admittedly after a 4-0 victory -- that Bournemouth were the best passing team that Manchester City had yet played.

Howe, though, is fully committed to life in the coastal town where he grew up and enjoys the day-to-day running of a club team. At just 38, there should be further chances to come.

Jurgen Klinsmann (14/1)

Some fans of the U.S. Men's National Team might be delighted if Klinsmann vacated his current post, but he is a manager with a considerable reputation in England. First, as a player with Tottenham in two spells during the 1990s, he won admirers as one the foreign imports that changed the English game.

Second, as Germany coach from 2004 to 2006, he was seen as the architect of the project that ultimately led to a World Cup win in 2014. What count may against him, though, are relatively diminishing returns from his American team and that he has made his life in California, with seemingly little desire to move back to Europe.

Gary Neville (33/1)

Among Allardyce's transgressions during the conversations taped by the Daily Telegraph was heavy criticism of Neville, who was assistant to Roy Hodgson from 2012 until the Euro 2016 round-of-16 exit at the hands of Iceland that brought down that regime.

Neville's disastrous four-month tenure as Valencia manager, which ended in March this year, hardly augments his credentials and he has looked far more relaxed after returning to life as a TV pundit. He has stated he might never go back into management and, even beyond being a reluctant contender, might be too closely associated with the summer's disasters in France.

John Brewin is a staff writer for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @JohnBrewinESPN.


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