Sport 5 ways Gareth Southgate can use Euro 2020 postponement to England's advantage

11:25  18 march  2020
11:25  18 march  2020 Source:   fourfourtwo.com

Southgate: I regret Smalling criticism

  Southgate: I regret Smalling criticism England manager Gareth Southgate says he regrets his criticism of Chris Smalling and is delighted by the defender's Roman renaissance this season. Southgate dropped the 30-year-old from his plans ahead of friendly internationals against Germany and Brazil in November 2017.In trying to explain Smalling's omission, Southgate said at the time: "We want to play in a certain way and the players I have brought in I want to see using the ball from the back and building it up in a certain way."That apparent slight on Smalling's ability is something the England boss still feels badly about.

England manager Gareth Southgate reacts to England ' s Euro 2020 draw where they will play Croatia and Czech Republic. Southgate hopes having to play several matches at Wembley will help spur on his side to do well in the competition.

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Gareth Southgate wearing a suit and tie © Provided by FourFourTwo Gareth Southgate

No one wanted to see the postponement of Euro 2020 until June 2021, but with the global extent of coronavirus – and how long societies will be kept in lockdown – still unknown, UEFA had little option.

From a purely footballing perspective, though, there could be some good from the delay for the Three Lions. Here are five things England manage Gareth Southgate should use the extra 12 months to focus on, and use this year to his advantage.

1. The return of Kane and Rashford

Harry Kane holding his hand up: 5 ways Gareth Southgate can use Euro 2020 postponement to England's advantage © Provided by FourFourTwo 5 ways Gareth Southgate can use Euro 2020 postponement to England's advantage

If there’s one thing we learnt from England’s unexpected run to the World Cup semi-finals in 2018, it was this: frontline good, defence not so good. 

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England - time to recover. England do not look terribly good value as the [7.2] third favourites, but a postponement of Euro 2020 could help them. Areas of concern for Gareth Southgate include the club form of Jordan Pickford, the centre of England ' s defence and finding the right balance in midfield.

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Golden boot winner Harry Kane was absolutely vital to England’s strong performance in Russia, shouldering much of the goalscoring burden with his aerial prowess and precision from the penalty spot. A long-term tendon injury was likely to rule him out this summer, however, leaving England without their captain and arguably their only truly world class player. 

It’s possible England could have scraped by had it not been for an injury to another star forward, Marcus Rashford. The Manchester United attacker had been enjoying a best-ever campaign for the Red Devils and would have relished the chance to lead England’s line in Kane’s absence.

But a serious back injury sustained in January also put his selection under threat, leaving England with a lack of quality striking options this summer. Southgate now has time on his side. Get Kane and Rashford fit in time for next summer's rescheduled spectacle, and the Three Lions might just bring it home. 

Coronavirus: The Euro postponed to 2021!

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2. Sort out the goalkeeping issue

(Photo by Stephanie Meek - CameraSport via Getty Images) © Getty (Photo by Stephanie Meek - CameraSport via Getty Images)

Jordan Pickford? Nick Pope? Dean Henderson? Rob Green, anyone?

England went into Russia 2018 with a clear No.1 in Jordan Pickford, but a turbulent season between the posts for Everton had led to calls for him to lose his place this summer. Those penalty heroics against Colombia are now a distant memory, it seems. Southgate remains a fan of the 26-year old, but would have taken note of his erratic displays since the beginning of last campaign. 

Burnley’s Nick Pope, meanwhile, is one of the best shot-stoppers in the Premier League and one of the strongest around when coming off his line to catch. He has his admirers, but seems to lack the calm distribution Pickford has shown since winning the England jersey in 2017. Henderson remains a talented but untested option.

Aulas thanks UEFA for Euro 2020

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England revenge mission: Gareth Southgate 's men won't fear Croatia or Czech Republic but England boss Gareth Southgate was a happy man following England ' s Euro 2020 draw England face Croatia and Czech Republic in Group D after avoiding Europe's big hitters

Gareth Southgate attended the Euro 2020 draw in Dublin on Sunday. England will play Czech Republic Southgate was in Dublin on Sunday for what was a favourable Euro 2020 qualifying draw for his team and he ‘We’re favourites and that’ s something we’ve got to start getting used to,’ he said.

All three now have the time to show Southgate why they deserve to be England’s last line of defence in the Euros. Southgate will be hoping to see much improvement from his Pickford, iat the very least. 

3. Settle on a midfield

  5 ways Gareth Southgate can use Euro 2020 postponement to England's advantage © Getty

Long gone are the days when England were forced to shoe-horn world-class talent on the wings due to a wealth of midfield quality. 

Nowadays, it’s tricky to even fill a potential engine room beyond Jordan Henderson, and what about the talent which hasn’t yet been given a chance to prove itself?

The excellent form of Jack Grealish deserves to be rewarded between now and next summer. It had seemed as if this tournament might have come just too soon for the likes of the Villa talisman and Phil Foden, who was only recently beginning to get a run of games for Manchester City, but now Southgate has no excuse. 

Delli Alli, Eric Dier and Jesse Lingard have all struggled with form this season, while the England boss remains uncertain on Harry Winks, Mason Mount and James Maddison. Talk of moving Trent Alexander-Arnold into midfield has also grown louder throughout the season, and what would that mean for Declan Rice? 

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Опубликовано: 30 нояб. 2019 г. England manager Gareth Southgate reacts to England ' s Euro Southgate hopes having to play several matches at Wembley will help spur on his side to do well in the competition. You'll also get team badge emojis from your favourite to use in live chat and premieres!!

Gareth Southgate said England must rise to the expectations of being group favourites after a favourable draw for Euro 2020 qualifying left them “We’re favourites and that’ s something we’ve got to start getting used to anyway,” said Southgate of the draw. “We’re going to have high expectations

The pieces are there, but England need time to work out how they fit together. Southgate has that now. 

4. Blood some more youngsters

REUTERS/Lisi Niesner © Reuters REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

After decades of systematic failure on the youth development front (if you don’t believe us, just have a look at the lineups in the 2009 U21 European Championship final), England finally have a silly amount of young talent coming through. 

The likes of Reece James at Chelsea, Brandon Williams and Mason Greenwood of Manchester United and Bukayo Saka at Arsenal are all young players who - just like Grealish - have shone for their clubs this campaign but are yet to receive an international call-up. 

Meanwhile, Lewis Cook, Fikayo Tomori and James Maddison have only one cap each despite becoming crucial members for their clubs this campaign.

Southgate’s squad remains an unfinished article, there is time for one of these phenomenal young talents to show they're the final piece of the jigsaw.  

5. Build experience

(Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images) © Getty (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

England had the second youngest squad in Russia and were the greenest in terms of international experience, with an average of just 20 caps across the squad. Gary Cahill’s 60 appearances - we don't know, either - boosted that figure drastically, might we add. 

Deschamps: "The only game to win is the one against the coronavirus"

 Deschamps: © Provided by Sofoot Other priorities than football. After the announcement of the postponement of Euro 2020 for a year, Didier Deschamps spoke on the official website of the French Football Federation , this Tuesday afternoon. " It is a wise decision, given the devastation that the Covid-19 is causing on the planet as a whole," launched the coach of the Blues. And for the Blues, what changes? “ For all of us, the priority is elsewhere.

The fact Southgate’s squad did so well is proof that age isn’t always a defining factor but any expert will tell you experience plays a huge role in international football, especially in the latter stages of tournaments where the stakes are sky-high. 

England remain a raw side to this day - especially once you factor in the additions of Jadon Sancho, who was yet to feature regularly for Borussia Dortmund two years ago, and Trent Alexander-Arnold, who must surely be a mandatory pick now. 

Another year of development, representing the country, winning domestic titles and training together should do this England side the world of good. 

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UEFA advises on the European Football Championship in crisis meeting on 17 March .
© Provided by AFP UEFA wants to advise on postponing the European Championship Da a possible postponement of the pan-European European Championship in the summer (12 June to 12 July) due to the spread of the corona virus is coming into focus, the European Football Union (UEFA) has called a crisis meeting next Tuesday with all those involved.

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