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Paul Simpson to coach England at this summer's FIFA U20 World Cup in South Korea

Friday 24 Feb 2017
Paul Simpson will be the head coach of England Under-20s at the 2017 World Cup in South Korea

Paul Simpson will take charge of England at the FIFA U20 World Cup in South Korea this summer.

The 50-year-old originally joined The FA as a national specialist coach in October 2016 and will now step up to lead the Young Lions team at the tournament in May following confirmation of Aidy Boothroyd’s Under-21 commitments.

Paul Simpson
  • Born: Carlisle, 26 July 1966
  • Clubs: Manchester City, Oxford United, Derby County, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Blackpool, Rochdale, Carlisle United
  • Managed: Rochdale, Carlisle United, Preston North End, Shrewsbury Town, Stockport County
  • Coached: Derby County, Newcastle United

Simpson, an experienced coach, said: “It is a huge honour to be asked to lead this very talented group of staff and players and I look forward to a fantastic challenge.

“This group have worked incredibly hard to earn the right to take part in these finals and I believe we can enjoy a successful competition. The experience gained will help the players take the next steps in their development as international footballers.”

The former winger amassed more than 800 games as a professional at ten clubs including Manchester City, Oxford United and Derby County, as well as representing England at U18 and U21 level.

Simpson’s route into coaching came via player-manager roles at Rochdale and hometown club Carlisle United, guiding the latter to successive promotions, before taking charge at Preston North End, Shrewsbury Town, Stockport County and Northwich Victoria.

Following a stint coaching at an academy in Portugal, he went on to assist Steve McClaren at Derby County and Newcastle United.

Matt Crocker, The FA’s head of development team coaching, said: “Paul has a wealth of experience from both a coaching and managerial perspective and he is the right man to take us into a key tournament this summer.

“We will all be working hard behind the scenes to support Paul and the team in the build-up to the World Cup.”

The England Under-20s have had a successful campaign so far in preparation for the World Cup

The U20s will learn their World Cup opponents at the draw in Suwon on 15 March but are set to warm up with a four-team mini tournament in France next month.

Simpson will be assisted by coaching duo Aaron Danks and Andy Edwards, as well as goalkeeping coach Richard Hartis.

May's U20 World Cup will be England's first entry in the competition since Turkey 2013, when Peter Taylor's side went out at the group stage. Prior to that, Brian Eastick led his team to the second round in Colombia 2011 but had previously tasted group stage exit in Egypt 2009.

Meanwhile, Ian Foster has become the latest addition to the technical division based at St. George’s Park, having been recruited as a national specialist coach working across all England development teams. The 40-year-old, who will specialise as an out-of-possession coach, was most recently on the coaching staff at Portsmouth.

By FA Staff