Pearson early favourite for Boro vacancy

NIGEL PEARSON is the bookmakers’ favourite to become Middlesbrough’s next permanent manager after Aitor Karanka was sacked on Thursday.

Pearson is 21-10 with Paddy Power to be next in at the Riverside following the decision to axe Karanka with Boro in a desperate Premier League position.

Boro, 19th in the table and without a league win since Christmas, are 4-11 to be relegated and 7-4 to stay up with Manchester United at home the next fixture for the strugglers on Sunday.

Caretaker Steve Agnew has been put in charge on a temporary basis and can be backed at 5-1 to get the gig on a permanent basis.

Former Boro boss Steve McClaren is 12-1 and Guus Hiddink is available at a best-priced 14-1, although Ladbrokes reported money for the Dutchman who is as low as 5-1 in places. 

Sunderland striker Jermain Defoe has been recalled to the England squad for the friendly away to Germany next Wednesday and home World Cup qualifier against Lithuania four days later at Wembley.

Betway reacted by making the 34-year-old 9-2 to be in England’s squad for the World Cup finals in Russia next year.

England squad – goalkeepers: Forster, Hart, Heaton; defenders: Bertrand, Cahill, Clyne, Jones, Keane, Shaw, Smalling, Stones, Walker; midfielders: Alli, Antonio, Barkley, Dier, Lallana, Lingard, Livermore, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Redmond, Sterling, Ward-Prowse; forwards: Defoe, Rashford, Vardy.

Match in Focus

15:00 TODAY

West Brom v Leicester

Home Win Draw Away Win
Key stats
  • Leicester are winless in five games
Expert verdict
Leicester have pulled clear of the relegation zone under Craig Shakespeare but the Foxes may have let their guard down now they are in a safer position. West Brom have earned the majority of their points at the Hawthorns, winning nine of their 17 home games, and should be backed to secure victory.

 

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