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Venables: McClaren deserves England job to 2010

Terry Venables says England would be wrong to sack Steve McClaren - even if they fail to qualify for Euro2008.

Tel said: "I understand that if we don't qualify there will be a feeling that it is time for a change.

"But there is also a need for commonsense and someone has to be bold enough to say 'yes' or 'no' to what we are doing. We are not even out of Euro 2008 yet. There could still be some twists and turns. But everything in the world is so fast these days there is an unnatural haste to make decisions which may not be right.

"It is time for cool heads and to calm down and have a proper look at what is going on. Is it really worth going on another long search for a new manager? Do we know that is going to win us one of these competitions? Or is it better to stick with what we have because deep down, those in authority know we are going forward?

"We will never win something like a World Cup if people don't follow their intuition and, instead, just keep ripping it all up and starting again. The people at the FA are being staunch and I'm confident they've already realised there has been an improvement with this regime. I'm not doing this to save my own skin, whatever people might think. I would say this if I was back in my previous role as a TV pundit. I believe progress is being made and that most people can see it.

"Maybe there are some supporters wondering if I'm mad but I don't find it hard to say. I really believe it. I remember how Bobby Robson didn't qualify for the 1984 European Championships and everyone was shouting for his head. He even offered to resign.

"But the FA stuck with him right through to the 1990 World Cup, where England only lost the semi-final on penalties."

Venables also drew parallels with Arsenal's recent history, adding: "Arsenal went on that amazing run to win the Premier League in 2004 without losing a game, then they had a few years where it wasn't working out for them and they didn't win the big prizes.

"But, despite a lot of criticism that he Gunners were falling apart, Arsene Wenger could see the green shoots of recovery and was confident it would come good.

"If there were no such signs with England we would hold our hands up, but that's not the case."

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Tribal Football Staff

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