England appoint Allardyce as manager
The Football Association have finally confirmed the appointment of Sam Allardyce as the new England manager.
Allardyce's selection was ratified by the FA's national board at Wembley on Thursday after the 61-year-old was put forward by a three-man selection panel consisting of technical director Dan Ashworth, chief executive Martin Glenn and vice-chairman David Gill.
The deal was still subject to the FA agreeing compensation with Allardyce's former club Sunderland with the Wearsiders making it clear in two statements that they were extremely unhappy at the disruption caused by the pursuit of a man who guided them away from relegation last season.
Allardyce leaves Sunderland after nine months in charge - he attended Wednesday's pre-season win at nearby Hartlepool United, but left before the final whistle - and succeeds Roy Hodgson, who resigned in the immediate aftermath of England's dismal Euro 2016 exit at the hands of Iceland.
An FA statement read: "Following a comprehensive and structured process, the Football Association is today delighted to confirm Sam Allardyce as England manager.
"The highly respected 61-year-old has signed an initial two-year contract and takes up the position with immediate effect following a successful spell retaining Sunderland's status in the Premier League. Allardyce's first match in charge will be a friendly fixture at Wembley Stadium on Thursday September 1.
"The unanimous choice of The FA's three-man selection panel, comprising FA chief executive Martin Glenn, technical director Dan Ashworth and acting chairman David Gill, Allardyce arrives with a proven track record of getting the best results out of the teams he has managed and a strong reputation as a forward-thinker with progressive ideas."
Allardyce said: "I am extremely honoured to be appointed England manager especially as it is no secret that this is the role I have always wanted. For me, it is absolutely the best job in English football.
"I will do everything I can to help England do well and give our nation the success our fans deserve. Above all, we have to make the people and the whole country proud.
"While my main focus will be on the senior team and getting positive results, I want to add my influence to the great work being done across the development teams at St. George's Park - a facility I have used with my previous clubs.
"I know we have talented, committed players and it is time for us to deliver."