Oxford United manager Michael Appleton is now the short-priced favourite with Sky Bet to become the new England Under-21 head coach. Aidy Boothroyd currently remains in caretaker charge and has been the favourite ever since Gareth Southgate took on the role with the senior team following the sacking of Sam Allardyce last year.

A flurry of money has come in the last 24 hours, which was seen the League One boss take over as the outright favourite for the role. The Under-21 side are back in action in March 2017 when they face back-to-back friendlies against Germany and then Denmark, both away from home. The FA would like a new man in place before then.

Back in 2013, when England Under-21s had just been knocked out of the European Championships, The Mirror reported that Appleton was the frontrunner to replace Stuart Pearce, who later left the role.

The 41-year-old came through the ranks at Manchester United, playing the majority of his career at Preston North End and West Bromwich Albion. His managerial career began with Portsmouth, lasting just under a year, where they were relegated into League One. He managed Blackpool for eleven games before spending another 67 days at Blackburn Rovers. With Oxford, he has led the club into League One and also the final of the Football League Trophy.

Appleton has always been rated as one of the up-and-coming coaches in the game and now that he has proved himself in management, the FA could now be willing to make their move. This would surely mean the end of his time as Oxford manager however, which would be a big blow for the Kassam Stadium club.


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I currently work as a Championship Research Analyst for Onside Analysis Ltd. In this role I provide match previews and reviews for every Championship game. I also delve into matches from all across the globe, gaining an insight into football from different leagues in different countries. I came into this role shortly after graduating from The University of Hull after studying BSc Sports Coaching & Performance. I am a Lincoln City fan and thankfully they're back in The72!!