Former England coach Terry Venables is in talks with Newcastle about the vacant managerial position at St James Park.

Venables has emerged as the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Sir Bobby Robson after talks with Newcastle chairman Freddy Shepherd.

According to reports, Venables would be a short-term appointment, with his brief likely to include preparing the groundwork for Alan Shearer to take over next year.

Striker Alan Shearer, who will retire from playing at the end of the season, had a close relationship with Venables during England’s Euro 96 campaign.

Reports say Gordon Strachan is also headed for talks on Tyneside, while Newcastle are thought to be keen on appointing Birmingham boss Steve Bruce.

Venablesmost recent pposition was at Leeds, but he left the troubled Yorkshire club March 2003 after eight months in charge at Elland Road. His previous managerial roles have included Crystal Palace, Barcelona, Spurs and Middlesbrough. He was also in charge of the England national team from 1994-96 and the Australian national team in 1997.