The Football Association are locked in negotiations with Luiz Felipe Scolari after offering the Brazilian the job of England head coach.

FA chief executive Brian Barwick and lawyer Simon Johnson flew to Lisbon yesterday after being given permission by the Portuguese FA to talk to Scolari (pictured), who will remain coach of Portugal until after the World Cup.

No announcement is expected today but Scolari has emerged as Sven-Goran Eriksson's likely successor after the FA's five-man selection panel failed to settle on a British candidate.

Scolari undoubtedly has the best credentials, having won the 2002 World Cup with Brazil and taken Portugal to the final of Euro 2004.

The news has infuriated the League Managers' Association, whose chairman Howard Wilkinson is the former FA technical director and who wanted an Englishman given the job.

Wilkinson, who has twice been England's caretaker manager, told Sky Sports News: "I think it would be a popular decision, but I don't think in the long term it's a good decision for what's best for England and English football.

"I don't have any reservations about him as a manager, his track record with Brazil was good, but name me a manager of Brazil whose record hasn't been good in the last 50-odd years.

"His record with Portugal particularly at the European Championships was good, but people who compete in European Championships on their home soil usually do well.

"Everyone speaks well of him. But I think in the long term it sends out the wrong message from the Football Association to English coaches and the ramifications will be seen in the years ahead."

Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce backed the potential appointment of Scolari, although he sympathised with homegrown managers such as Alan Curbishley, Steve McClaren and Sam Allardyce.

Pearce said: "I do recognise that there are Englishmen who feel they are experienced enough to do the job and I can understand they are frustrated if they haven't got it.

"I am surprised it's not an Englishman because the groundswell of public opinion seemed to be pushing towards someone of that nature.

"When my name was linked with the job I said immediately I didn't believe I had the experience. Whoever gets it will have my full support."

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