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08th Jul 2016

England manager race blown open as Marcelo Bielsa resigns from Lazio job

Back on the market.

Tom Victor

When Roy Hodgson stepped down as England manager following their Euro 2016 elimination, there were plenty of calls for Marcelo Bielsa to replace him.

But the rumours were quashed almost as soon as they began, with the Argentine announced as the new head coach of Serie A giants Lazio.

We figured that was that, but all might not be as it seems. Reports have emerged from Italy suggesting Bielsa has spurned the Roman club, leaving Simone Inzaghi to take the reins. This has now been confirmed by the club, who note their ‘surprise’ at his resignation.

While no reason has been given for the development at the time of writing, some believe this is a sign that the former Argentina and Chile boss got cold feet when it emerged that he could be in the running for Hodgson’s old job.

Bielsa had been out of work since leaving his post as Marseille manager early last season.

The 60-year-old, known for his creative formations, was in charge of the Argentina team that lost to England at the 2002 World Cup.

He led his country to Olympic Gold in 2004 with a squad including Carlos Tevez, Javier Mascherano and Willy Caballero, before taking over as Chile boss for the 2010 World Cup.

With England still on the lookout for Hodgson’s replacement, Bielsa’s name has joined those of Sam Allardyce, Jurgen Klinsmann and Arsene Wenger among the contenders.

Any chance of England switching to a 3-3-1-3 formation for their first 2018 World Cup qualifier?