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Steve Wigley set for Stuart Pearce link-up

13 May 2014

Fulham have confirmed the departure of Under-18 team manager Steve Wigley, paving the way for him to become Stuart Pearce's assistant at Nottingham Forest.

Press Association Sport understands that incoming manager Pearce, who will officially take charge at the Sky Bet Championship club on July 1, wants to make former Forest winger Wigley the first addition to his backroom team.

Wigley, 52, worked under Pearce during his successful spell in charge of the England Under-21 team and, after approaching Fulham earlier this month, the Reds are confident of concluding a deal for the pair to be reunited at the City Ground.

Wigley leaves with immediate effect after overseeing a successful period for Fulham's youth teams, but following the club's relegation from the Barclays Premier League.

He joined the Cottagers in the summer of 2012 and, under Huw Jennings, played a major role in the development of young players. Last week saw the Under-18 side narrowly defeated 7-6 on aggregate by west London neighbours Chelsea in the FA Youth Cup Final.

Academy director Jennings said via a statement on ''It's very disappointing that Steve has left us, especially after such a successful period for the Under-18s.

''Steve was a great asset to Fulham, but he has received an offer in football that he felt compelled to accept, and impossible for us to persuade him otherwise.

"We wish Steve all the very best and thank him for his contribution during his time here."

As a player Wigley made more than 80 appearances for Forest between 1981 and 1985, before spells with Sheffield United, Birmingham, Portsmouth and Exeter.

His first job in management came with Aldershot but he returned to the City Ground as assistant academy director under Paul Hart, before moving up to become first-team coach.

A spell followed at Southampton where he eventually became first-team manager, before joining Pearce at Manchester City and then linking up with him again in the England set up.

After his involvement with the national team, Wigley coached at Bolton, Hull - twice - and Bristol City prior to his appointment at Fulham in the summer of 2012.

Pearce, who played for Forest for 12 years and had a spell as caretaker boss during the 1996-97 season, will officially succeed Billy Davies on July 1 following the completion of his media work at this summer's World Cup in Brazil.

It is understood he will also try to add goalkeeping coach Brian Eastick, another of Pearce's staff during his time with the England Under-21s, to his backroom team at Forest.

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