Southgate given permission to carry on as manager

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The Independent Online

Middlesbrough last night got the answer they wanted when manager Gareth Southgate was permitted to remain in charge while he pursues his coaching qualifications.

The Premier League Board has agreed to extend Southgate's dispensation to allow him to gain his B and A Licences before he embarks upon the Pro Licence course during the summer.

A statement said: "The Premier League Board [yesterday] considered Middlesbrough's request that Gareth Southgate be given dispensation from the Premier League Rule Q.4.

"In this instance, the board took into account the fact that Gareth Southgate had up until recently been a regular international player, which therefore had prevented him from taking the necessary Uefa coaching badges towards the end of his playing career; that the structure of Uefa coaching courses in England is such that they are not sufficiently accessible to players in Southgate's position; that Southgate has undertaken to have completed his Uefa A qualification by the end of the current season; and to have started his Pro Licence in time for the start of the 2007-08 season."

"Given the specific circumstances in relation to Southgate's situation and his subsequent undertakings," the statement continued, "the board has consented to Middlesbrough's request."

Southgate was relieved to see the matter finally resolved. He said: "I am delighted to have brought the saga to a happy conclusion, if only because it will mean I will now be asked something else when I talk to the press.

"I have always been committed to gaining the necessary qualifications to everyone's satisfaction," he added, "and I am delighted that the Premier League [board has] given me the go-ahead to continue in my role."

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