Portsmouth name Michael Appleton as new manager

Portsmouth have named West Bromwich Albion assistant head coach Michael Appleton as their new manager.

The 35-year-old has signed a three-and-a-half-year deal and will take over from Steve Cotterill, who left for Championship rivals Nottingham Forest.

The former Manchester United trainee has held various coaching roles at the Baggies since 2003 but this is his first job as a permanent manager.

"I'm delighted and excited to be taking the job," said Appleton in a statement.

Pompey have been looking for a new boss since Cotterill left on 14 October.

Analysis

In a field of candidates which ranged from Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer to Steve Coppell, Michael Appleton has emerged from nowhere to claim the Portsmouth job. The club cast the net wide and certainly took their time to find Steve Cotterill's successor, but were never likely to break the bank for some of the high profile candidates. Appleton inherits a squad well capable of moving up the Championship, and a club eager to lay foundations for the future. On paper, it seems a good fit

"It's going to be a progressive challenge," added Appleton.

"You get judged on results and the first team is the most important thing, but we want to build the infrastructure of the club, developing the academy and hopefully along the line getting our own training ground. Things like recruitment will be key.

"Hopefully, with a sensible approach, we can take the club forward."

Former Reading manager Steve Coppell  and ex-Doncaster and Bournemouth boss Sean O'Driscoll were believed to have been interviewed, but Pompey have decided to go for Appleton.

He initially joined West Brom as a player in 2001 and also had spells at Lincoln, Grimsby and Preston but was forced to retire from playing because of a knee injury in 2003.

In June 2005, Appleton announced that he was going to sue the surgeon that he believed had ended his career early. He later received damages.

The former central midfielder has been at West Brom for over 10 years and has had a variety of coaching roles at the Hawthorns.

In February, Appleton was placed in temporary charge of first-team affairs after the board placed Roberto di Matteo on gardening leave.