Stale Solbakken will be the new Wolverhampton Wanderers manager. The 44-year-old Norwegian, who was sacked as Cologne's head coach last month, held talks with the Midlands club on Thursday and will be confirmed as Mick McCarthy's permanent successor in the coming days. His task will be to secure an immediate return to the Premier League in the wake of relegation this season.

The appointment comes as something of a surprise, although Solbakken had an impressive record with FC Copenhagen, where he won five league titles, before he moved to the Bundesliga last summer. He is expected to watch Sunday's final Premier League game, against Wigan, leaving Terry Connor, the interim manager since McCarthy was sacked in February, in charge at the DW Stadium. Connor is likely to stay on at the club and return to his assistant manager post.

Solbakken's 12-year playing career, which included a short spell at Wimbledon during the 1997-98 season, came to an end when he suffered a cardiac arrest in 2001 during a training session with FC Copenhagen, when Roy Hodgson was his manager.