Glenn Backs Les

Glenn Roeder is backing Les Reed to fill the FA Technical Director role vacated by Howard Wilkinson when he took over at Sunderland last year.

"I have known Les Reed for a number of years now; he is an excellent man to deal with and I think the FA are very fortunate to have him on board," says Glenn.

"I am only hoping he gets what he deserves, and that when they are thinking about the next technical director to succeed Howard Wilkinson, they will promote Les.

"He has worked alongside Howard for a number of years and has overseen the birth and development of the academy system, which is brilliant."

In the midst of the debate about the future of English football, Glenn sounds an optimistic note and says: "There is no doubt about it, give our academy another four or five years and we will be churning out players in the manner that the French academy has been over the last few years.

"I spend a lot of time at our academy and see a lot of academy football - and there is wonderful young talent from the age of nine onwards at the academies now.

"These young boys are going to be top players, but it has only been going four or so years and it needs a 10 year rollover before the production line starts turning out high quality players.

"I think it will be terrific for all the coaches at the FA if they can see a progression for all the efforts they put in.

"And it would be a natural progression for Les to be given the opportunity to take us forward into the next four or five years to oversee the development of the academy system.

"He has certainly got the talent and the ability, in my opinion, to do that - and, just as importantly, he has the experience, because he has been at the FA a long while now."