Stuart Pearce will call his England players together at 10am to name the team he hopes will win him the job for Euro 2012, a tournament for which he is planning so extensively he has asked the Football Association to change the warm-up programme Fabio Capello had put in place.
Pearce has not just restricted himself to managing the team against Holland on Wednesday but become involved in the operational side and recommended changes to the logistical arrangements. He is not convinced by Capello's plans to take the players to Marbella and has suggested an alternative training camp in Spain.
The caretaker manager reiterated on Tuesday that he did not want his appointment to be for one match and even went as far as arranging a penalty shoot-out in training so he could begin the process of working out the best men for the job should it be needed this summer. He has also devised a timetable for when and where the players will have to report at the end of the season.
"I've put some plans into place," Pearce said. "Fabio had most of the planning, and training camp, in place but I've tinkered with that slightly. I've made my recommendations to the FA in regard to our preparation time, where it might be and I've outlined that to the players. The first meeting I had was with staff and players on Monday morning so they know the exact squad meet-up dates, get-together dates and everything is outlined."
Pearce is running the risk of allegations of being presumptuous but it signals a man who is deadly serious about his chances of taking the team to Poland and Ukraine before relinquishing the position at the end of the tournament. Harry Redknapp, the Tottenham manager, remains favourite to succeed Capello but the FA appears to be giving Pearce a free rein to plan for this summer and he is operating under the belief that he is regarded as a strong candidate.
"Stuart saw Sir Trevor [Brooking] and myself last week and asked how we wanted to play it regarding planning for the summer," said Adrian Bevington, the managing director of Club England and one of the four-man committee who will select the new England manager. "We're happy for him to sit down with our team operations people and to finalise the detail. We're confident that, whoever the manager is in the summer, he will be able to hit the ground running with the plans we'll have in place."
"Stuart is just doing everything you would expect," said Brooking, the FA's head of football development. "If you were at a club you might promote someone internally to take over that and see how it moves forward. Stuart is quite rightly planning, as you would."
Bevington added that no contact has as yet been made with potential candidates for the vacant manager's position, though the selection process is expected to gather pace in the wake of this evening's friendly against the Dutch.
Pearce, meanwhile, certainly seems intent on doing it his way. Micah Richards, the Manchester City right-back Capello routinely ignored, is likely to start, particularly now Glen Johnson has joined Kyle Walker on the list of withdrawals. Danny Welbeck is in line for his first start, spearheading the attack in Wayne Rooney's absence. However, Pearce has kept his team a closely guarded secret and will not inform the players until a mid-morning meeting at their hotel. At the same meeting he will also announce his captain. Steven Gerrard is the most obvious candidate, followed by Scott Parker. Joe Hart is another option but the FA said nothing too much should be read into his appearance at Tuesday's press conference. One possibility is that Gerrard starts as captain and Hart takes over in the second half.
Pearce has called up Joleon Lescott to replace Johnson but has made it clearhe will select a relatively inexperienced team and he challenged the younger players to make the most of their opportunity. "They're in the squad because of the ability they show for their clubs. We'll tell them to go and play as they do for their clubs. Go and express yourself. Go and play and show us your ability. You're fighting for a place in a major finals.
"Whenever I played for England, from my first cap to my 78th, I always thought: 'If I play well tonight, I might get another cap, I might be kept in the team.' That should be the mentality for these players now. Play well on Wednesday and it might keep you in the England team."
Pearce seems to be applying the same philosophy to himself and he made it clear that, if he did get the job, he would not allow Premier League managers to dictate how long he used their players. "I won't reach any agreement with the clubs," he said. "I travel round all the clubs and have great connections with all the managers, and I'd like to think they know that I'll have a duty of care to the players. If I'm putting them on the pitch and they're only half-fit, that's detrimental to us as a country."
Gerrard and Stewart Downing both sat out an eight-a-side training match on Tuesday because of the exertions of Sunday's Carling Cup final while Johnson reported a minor problem and returnedto Anfield as a precaution.