Lee Carsley and Ashley Cole Take Charge of England U21

Lee Carsley

Former Everton midfielder Lee Carsley has been appointed as the new head coach of the England U21 side and the 47-year-old will be assisted by former England defender Ashley Cole.

Lee Carsley Appointed Head Coach of England U21 With Ashley Cole as Assistant

Carsley Stepping Up

Carsley, who has held numerous coaching roles since retiring from playing in 2011, steps up from the U20 England team, where he spent a year in charge. Meanwhile, Cole will combine his role alongside Carsley with the work he is doing in the academy at Chelsea.

The connection Carsley has with the England set-up goes back to his time with the U19 side in 2015, while he has also previously worked with the U21s as an assistant coach.

His previous coaching roles include the Brentford Development Squad, Brentford and Manchester City U18s and U23s. In first-team set-ups, Carsley has also been the caretaker at Coventry City on two occasions and the caretaker at Birmingham City.

Speaking to the FA website about his new role, Carsley said: “I see it as a massive honour and achievement to coach the MU21s. It is a really prestigious position with a lot of responsibility as has been proven by the calibre of predecessors in this role.

“Gareth and Steve Holland have always been very supportive and I’m looking forward to working more closely with them.
“We have a great opportunity to help the senior side by developing the best young talent in this country while combining that with the aim of being successful at U21 level.
“I will have a great team around me. Ashley is a brilliant addition to the staff and we will also have Tim Dittmer as goalkeeping coach, with all of his experience of the game.
“I’ve been on courses with Ashley during lockdown and been impressed. He is committed to coaching and player development so a lot of our thoughts are aligned.”

Cole Joins as Assistant

Defender Cole won 107 caps for England during his playing days and began his coaching career with Derby County in 2019, the last club he played for before retiring.

He returned to Chelsea to work in their academy in October 2019 and has been there ever since.

Cole took part in the launch of England Football Learning’s International Player to Coach programme, which helps players transition from playing into management and has also been undertaken by Wayne Rooney, Michael Dawson and Carlton Cole.

On his appointment, Cole said: “I’m really happy to get this opportunity to support Lee and work with the best youngsters in the country.

“I loved playing for the national team and to now get the chance to work as an England coach is a special feeling. St. George’s Park is an amazing place and I can’t wait to get started. I want to do my best to help young players to develop, and also learn from some brilliant people at the same time.”

Carsley and Cole’s first match in charge of the U21s will be away against Romania in September, while their first home match will be against Kosovo in the same month.


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