Pearce: There will be great expectations
As a veteran of 78 senior appearances for his country, including two major tournament semi-finals, and coach of the Under-21 squad since 2007, Pearce is acutely aware of how England's chances of ending their long wait for international glory this summer will be ramped up in the weeks before the big kick-off.
That the Three Lions have done nothing to justify such feelings matters little. "The expectation is vastly too high every time we go to major tournaments," he said.
"We play against some top-line countries and we take them on as though we're superior outside the footballing environment. We'll take on Spain here with an even-steven mentality when what they have achieved in the last four years by far and away exceeds what we've achieved.
"The expectation that will follow and lead the team into the tournament will be slightly out of tilt with reality. I don't want to play down our chances of winning anything, I wouldn't do that, but trophy cabinets don't lie. And look at ours."
Pearce unveiled a youthful squad yesterday for next Wednesday's friendly with the Netherlands. Following Fabio Capello's shock exit, it is widely anticipated Pearce is only keeping the seat warm until such time as Harry Redknapp severs his ties with Tottenham.
However, listening to the firmness of Pearce's own statements, nothing can be taken for granted, in the short-term at least. "I've said to my bosses that if they need me to take the team in the summer I've got the experience," he said.
"Someone on the football side has to be planning. That's why I've been in the building over the last five years, for situations like this when someone has to step into the breach.
"I don't sit here and pretend I've got the answers to all the ills in football. I am a pretty lightly-raced coach, if you like. But I have a lot of tournament experience. That is the only thing I can offer."
It was not so much Pearce's words that came as a surprise, more the force with which they were delivered, unprompted. The implication was clear, even though it did come with those caveats.
"At this moment in time I don't have the experience to be the full-time England manager, so my run would end in the summer," he said. "And I fully expect they would have manager in place to take the team to the Euros. But I am here and available if I am needed."