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Tuesday, February 16, 1999 Published at 09:00 GMT


Keegan poised for England job

Kevin Keegan: Could become a part-time coach until his Fulham contract expires

Kevin Keegan is expected to be named the new England manager in the next few days.

The Fulham boss met with the Football Association on Monday and now looks likely to replace Howard Wilkinson for next month's European qualifier against Poland.

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According to newspaper reports, Keegan has been offered a four year deal. But the ex-England and Liverpool striker has warned the FA that he is still keen to honour his contract at Fulham - which runs until June 2000.

Keegan spoke at length on Monday with the chairman of the FA's international committee, Noel White and acting chairman David Davies.

And although the negotiations are expected to continue on Wednesday - the FA have maintained they are keeping their options open.

Spokesman Steve Double said: "Noel White and David Davies have travelled up to the north-east to meet with Kevin Keegan and they had an amicable meeting lasting just over two hours.

"The plan is they will speak again within the next 48 hours. Talks will be ongoing, and the position with the FA is that we will consider all options as well.

"Of course, if you are talking to somebody and the talks are ongoing, that is obviously not an end to the matter."

Part-time coach

Keegan's desire to stay at Fulham could lead to him accepting the job part-time until his Fulham contract expires.

But, according to the FA's Geoff Thompson, that would only be a short-term possibility.

Speaking in The Mirror newspaper, Thompson said: "We are happy for him to work with both the FA and Fulham but we would want his position with his club resolved in the summer as we don't want a part-time manager in the long-term.

"We want Kevin Keegan for a long time, not just for one or three games. We would like him initially to take the England team for the Poland game, then we would like him to oversee our two ties in the summer and then resolve his long-term future."

Another of Keegan's demands is likely to be that the FA change the date of the Walsall- Fulham game planned for March 27, the same day as England's clash against Poland at Wembley.

According to another newspaper report Keegan has also been given permission to miss England's friendly with Hungary in Budapest on April 28 if Fulham are still involved in a promotion battle.

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