Pearce seen as England's great hope

England U21 boss Stuart Pearce is emerging as Fabio Capello's long-term successor.

Trevor Brooking, the FA's director of football development, has been desperate to get some English involvement into the Capello regime.

But the decision of the new coach, who will be unveiled at FA headquarters today, to bring in four Italian assistants has left no room for an Englishman to land a meaningful role.

The FA hope to get round that by boosting Under-21 boss Pearce's profile. But Brooking said: "With hand on heart I cannot guarantee the next manager will be English."

While Pearce is expected to remain in charge of the young Lions, Brooking wants him to be seen as a contender to take over when Capello's contract ends in 2012.

Brooking added: "Stuart has been doing an excellent job with the Under-21s and the experience of managing the team in tournaments is really important."