Stuart Pearce has been full-time manager of the England Under-21 team since July 2007.
His first managerial appointment came towards the end of his 12 years as a player at Nottingham Forest, the club making him caretaker manager in December 1996. He won his first match 2-1 against Arsenal but Forest were relegated from the top flight, by which time he had relinquished his managerial duties on Dave Bassett’s arrival.
After retiring as a player, he stayed with Manchester City as a coach under Kevin Keegan. He was appointed caretaker manager after Keegan left in March 2005 and given the job ‘permanently’ after taking City to within a successful spot-kick of qualification for the UEFA Cup. (Robbie Fowler missed his kick in the last minute in a 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough.)
The next two seasons were disappointing in terms of League position and Pearce left in May 2007.
Three months before that The FA had appointed him as part-time manager of the England Under-21s, succeeding Peter Taylor. He took the team to the UEFA Championship Semi-Finals in Holland in June of that year, the hosts winning a protracted penalty shootout, and was confirmed as full-time manager in July.
Pearce’s team went one better in the next tournament, reaching the Final in Sweden in 2009. It was England’s first for 25 years.
In January 2008 Fabio Capello had appointed him as a coach for the senior team, increasing his role within the England set-up.
Under Pearce, England's Under-21s reached the UEFA European Championship Finals for a third time in succession in 2011 and were the only team to feature at the 2007, 2009 and 2011 tournaments. However, draws against Spain and Ukraine in the group stage meant that victory over Czech Republic in the final match was required in order to progress.
Leading 1-0 with time running out, things looked good, but an equaliser three minutes from time virtually ended their hopes of going into the semi-final before and a second injury-time eliminated England.
Following the resignation of Fabio Capello as England Senior Manager in February 2012, Pearce was handed temporary charge of the side for their international against Holland at Wembley on 29 February. Brian Eastick
took the reins of the Under-21s for their Euro 2013 Qualifier with Belgium on the same night.
(U21s stats above do not include England U21s v Italy, 25 March 2007 at Wembley Stadium. Nigel Pearson was in caretaker for this match)