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Thursday, 10 October, 2002, 20:08 GMT 21:08 UK
FA seeks Wilkinson pay-off
Football Association chief executive Adam Crozier (right) with Sven-Goran Eriksson
Crozier (right) will enlist the help of Eriksson (left)
The Football Association has confirmed it will seek compensation from Sunderland after they named Howard Wilkinson as their new boss.

FA chief executive Adam Crozier is likely to look for a six-figure payment from Black Cats chairman Bob Murray as Wilkinson had almost two years to run on his contract as technical director.

"Bob Murray rung me on Tuesday and asked for permission to speak to Howard," said Crozier.

"I said 'fine' as I don't think it's right to stand in people's way."


We are disappointed to lose Howard as technical director, but we are grateful for everything he has done and respect his decision to return to club management
Adam Crozier

"Howard and Bob came back to me said they wanted to go ahead. We had an initial chat about compensation, just to make sure we were all aware of where we stood.

"Bob and I will sit down after these two England games and sort it out."

Crozier, who is in Slovakia ahead of England's opening Euro 2004 qualifier, will involve Sven-Goran Eriksson in the hunt for Wilkinson's replacement.

High-profile candidates Roy Hodgson and Peter Taylor are expected to be in the frame.

However, there are also strong internal candidates, such as Les Reed, the director of technical development.

Crozier paid tribute to Wilkinson's hard work during his five-year tenure at the FA.

"We are disappointed to lose Howard as technical director, but we are grateful for everything he has done and respect his decision to return to club management.

"Through his charter for quality initiative, which laid the foundations for academies and centres of excellence, Howard has contributed greatly to the development of young players and enhanced the standard of coaching in this country.


I am very grateful to the FA for understanding that the position at Sunderland is exciting
Howard Wilkinson

"I would like to wish him every success in the future at Sunderland."

Wilkinson, 58, added: "I feel that I have benefited massively from my time as technical director at the FA.

"It was a great opportunity to take a step back from the narrow focus that club management can have and look at the new and modern developments that were occurring in the game.

"I am very grateful to Adam Crozier and the FA for understanding that the position at Sunderland is challenging and exciting at this stage in my career."

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FA chief executive Adam Crozier
"He did a terrific job for us"
 VOTE RESULTS
Will Howard Wilkinson keep Sunderland up?

Yes
 25.93% 

No
 74.07% 

18616 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

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