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Sport Euros delay may be ideal for England's young guns... the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate's starlets could peak at the perfect time next summer with rivals Spain, France and Co all ageing

04:30  26 march  2020
04:30  26 march  2020 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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

  5 ways Gareth Southgate can use Euro 2020 postponement to England's advantage Euro 2020's postponement is frustrating news for football fans, but it’s not all bad for England boss Gareth Southgate, who can use this time to rejig his squad and welcome back a few key playersFrom 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.

England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could peak at the perfect time next summer with rivals The holes in Southgate ' s squad mentioned earlier may well be patched over time . As such, I will be disappointed if he doesn't arrive on the

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could peak at the perfect time next summer with Neuer's current contract runs out next summer and there is a very real chance that he could move on to pastures new.

Soccer Football - Euro 2020 Qualifier - Group A - England v Montenegro - Wembley Stadium, London, Britain - November 14, 2019  England's Harry Kane with manager Gareth Southgate after being substituted  Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley © Thomson Reuters Soccer Football - Euro 2020 Qualifier - Group A - England v Montenegro - Wembley Stadium, London, Britain - November 14, 2019 England's Harry Kane with manager Gareth Southgate after being substituted Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

Gareth Southgate has had to deal with plenty in his three-and-a-half years in charge of the England team.

He has faced the fallout of the Sam Allardyce affair, a Euro 2020 qualifying campaign pockmarked with incidents of racism and, more surprisingly, a canteen altercation between two players — Raheem Sterling and Joe Gomez. 

In the middle of all that, Southgate took England to within a hair's breadth of a World Cup final. How long ago that suddenly seems now.

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Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s The Olympic flame will still be handed over to the Tokyo 2020 organising committee at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens on Thursday March 19, but without fans present.

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s Recent reports also suggest that the Argentine striker has already agreed to a big-money contract at the Nou Camp but still have to negotiate any deal with the San Siro outfit first.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Gareth Southgate has transformed England in his three-and-a-half years in the manager role © Provided by Daily Mail Gareth Southgate has transformed England in his three-and-a-half years in the manager role

It's fair to say Southgate's latest challenge was never on his radar. The 49-year-old is a strategist but some things you cannot plan for and one such matter is the postponement of a major tournament by 12 months.

Like the rest of us right now, Southgate would give anything to know that the European Championship now scheduled for next summer will actually take place.

That would be a sure sign that Europe and the world had placed the coronavirus epidemic behind them. He is a football man, though, and will still be thinking football thoughts. With that in mind, it is hard not to wonder what his team may look like this time next year.

'If he wants to leave the club we will discuss it': Borussia Dortmund chief admits Jadon Sancho may push for a move as he hails 'maybe the greatest talent in Europe'

  'If he wants to leave the club we will discuss it': Borussia Dortmund chief admits Jadon Sancho may push for a move as he hails 'maybe the greatest talent in Europe' Hans-Joachim Watzke hailed the 19-year-old winger as as one of the best under the age of 21 he has seen. The starlet has been linked with a host of Europe's top clubs including Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City and Real Madrid after lighting up the Bundesliga. © Provided by Daily Mail Hans-Joachim Watzke hailed the 19-year-old winger as as one of the best under the age of 21 Watzke told RMC Sport: 'Jadon is a great, great talent, maybe the greatest talent in Europe currently of players under the age of 21.

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could peak at the perfect time next 'Other than that, my family is well, and obviously everyone is thinking about coronavirus at the moment and it's a time to be together, to

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets 'This is not ideal for the knee,' she said. 'I don't have access to the equipment that I specifically need and no physio, or fitness trainer. 'I can 't bring what I need into the flat.

Harry Kane et al. playing a game of football: He has a depth of talent not afforded to his predecessors and they are only going to get better © Provided by Daily Mail He has a depth of talent not afforded to his predecessors and they are only going to get better

England would have had a chance of making the latter stages of the tournament this June. Playing their group games at Wembley would have provided something of a comfort blanket. 

England remain strong at home where they are now supported by a public who buy their tickets and turn on their televisions with a little more hope and fondness.

Nevertheless, winning the tournament — speculation that had started to crop up in far too many conversations this season — would in all likelihood have proved beyond them. 

Harry Kane standing in front of a crowd: Young players like Jadon Sancho will get another year's experience ahead of the Euros in 2021 © Provided by Daily Mail Young players like Jadon Sancho will get another year's experience ahead of the Euros in 2021

Southgate's team has promise but it has holes in it, too. The opposition from the best of Europe would have been a little stronger than many of the teams England defeated during their run to the last four of the World Cup two summers ago.

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Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s The Olympic flame will still be handed over to the Tokyo 2020 organising committee at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens on Thursday March 19, but without fans present.

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could peak at the perfect time This is in common with many of their rivals , who anticipate having cash-flow problems if the current shutdown continues into the summer .

This is not meant to sound unkind but England largely beat teams they would expect to beat in Russia, then lost to the first good one they faced — Croatia. They'll have a tougher schedule in the Euros.

So maybe the next 12 months or so present Southgate with opportunity, whether he would have wished for it or not.

a football player on a field: James Maddison is impressing with Leicester and could cement a starting role with England next summer © Provided by Daily Mail James Maddison is impressing with Leicester and could cement a starting role with England next summer

His team, his squad, is a young one. His oldest player is Jordan Henderson and he is only 29. So he will not lose players to the passing of time over the next 12 months. Conversely he should see many of them improve and mature.

REASONS FOR ENGLAND TO BE CHEERFUL IN 2021 

KANE AND RASHFORD BACK 

The delay to the competition will give strikers Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford time to return from injury.

MOST ENGLAND GOALS SINCE 2018 WORLD CUP 

Harry Kane - 13

Raheem Sterling - 10

Marcus Rashford - 7

a man with a football ball on a field: Phil Foden is still developing at Manchester City and may yet force his way into Southgate's plans © Provided by Daily Mail Phil Foden is still developing at Manchester City and may yet force his way into Southgate's plans

TIME FOR STERLING TO FIND FORM

England's No.1: Who are the favourites to be goalkeeper for Euro 2021?

  England's No.1: Who are the favourites to be goalkeeper for Euro 2021? Jordan Pickford has been first choice in recent years, but finds his position under threat from the likes of Nick Pope and Dean HendersonGareth Southgate had been facing a difficult call over who would start between the posts for the Three Lions' opening group game against Croatia on June 14.

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could peak at the Like all of their top flight rivals , Villa’s players are attempting to maintain their fitness away from the club’s Bodymoor Heath training ground, but El

Euros delay may be ideal for England ' s young guns the incredible depth of talent means Gareth Southgate ' s starlets could England stars Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jesse Lingard show off incredible dead-ball skills by hitting makeshift targets while staying at home amid coronavirus crisis.

Raheem Sterling has been one of England’s key men but has struggled with form over the second half of the season.

The core of the England line-up should not change much. The 'three or four' certain starters who Southgate reveals to have in his mind will, in all likelihood, remain Henderson, Harry Maguire, Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane.

It will be interesting to see how Kane fares during his first full season under the increasingly erratic Jose Mourinho at Spurs, but whatever happens it would be extra-ordinary if one of the most gifted centre forwards in the world suddenly forgot how to score goals.

Outside that quartet, opportunity knocks. England need a reliable goalkeeper, that much is certain. Hopefully that will be an improved Jordan Pickford. The Everton keeper has vast natural talent but suffers from lapses in concentration. He is also too emotional and must rid himself of the strange notion that people want him to fail. They don't.

His place will come under threat from Burnley's Nick Pope, Aston Villa's Tom Heaton and, perhaps most seriously, Sheffield United's Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson. Pickford has the shirt, though, so it really is up to him.

A season free of injury should accelerate Liverpool's Gomez toward genuine world-class status and secure his place alongside Maguire at the centre of the defence. Either side, it would be a surprise if anybody usurps Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Chilwell, although Luke Shaw's return to form at Manchester United has been interesting.

France, Czech Republic in Great Britan's Davis Cup group

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Jordan Pickford holding a green ball: England No 1 Jordan Pickford is likely to face stiff competition to be the starter at the Euros © Provided by Daily Mail England No 1 Jordan Pickford is likely to face stiff competition to be the starter at the Euros

But it is in attacking positions that the field may broaden over the course of whatever eventually passes for the next domestic season. Expect further progress from Leicester duo James Maddison and Harvey Barnes, and Phil Foden now has the extra year he needs to make an impression. Southgate loves him but this summer would have come too soon for the Manchester City player.

Mason Greenwood at United is just a teenager but looks a natural goalscorer and we do not have many of those. He should aim high next season and Chelsea pair Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount, along with Dominic Calvert-Lewin of Everton, will sink or swim when their club managers inevitably bring in competition for their places from abroad during the summer.

And what of Jack Grealish? If ever a player has performed so well in a struggling Premier League team as the Aston Villa midfielder then I struggle to recall it. 

Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Seamus Coleman are posing for a picture: Dominic Calvert-Lewin is excelling at Everton and will believe he can make the squad in 2021 © Provided by Daily Mail Dominic Calvert-Lewin is excelling at Everton and will believe he can make the squad in 2021

Watching him and Maddison trying to drag their teams to victory in January's Carabao Cup semi-final at Villa Park was uplifting.

A move to a bigger club seems like the natural next step for the 24-year-old Grealish. If he stays fit and does not make it into Southgate's squad for the first time over the coming year, something will have gone very wrong indeed.

Who would have thought that the two years following the World Cup would have been so unkind to players like Dele Alli, Eric Dier and Jesse Lingard? Their lack of form in recent times has been unfathomable. Personally I have not yet lost faith in Alli. At his best, he still makes my starting XI.

Euro 2020 fate to be decided as virus threat looms

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Gareth Southgate wearing a suit and tie: Southgate will have decisions to make with only four players deemed to be certain starters © Provided by Daily Mail Southgate will have decisions to make with only four players deemed to be certain starters

Undoubtedly, one or more of Southgate's players will suffer similarly as we emerge from the darkness of this wretched health crisis and into the light of another football season.

But, unlike many who passed before him, Southgate has a depth of talent at his disposal. We haven't even discussed here the improvement in Marcus Rashford or the burgeoning talent of Jadon Sancho. There are others threatening to push through from the levels beneath.

The holes in Southgate's squad mentioned earlier may well be patched over time. As such, I will be disappointed if he doesn't arrive on the threshold of next summer's European Championship with his team priced at shorter odds than they are right now.

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Coronavirus: England goalkeeper Pickford refutes self-isolation reports .
Everton's players seemed to have been advised to self-isolate, but Jordan Pickford has insisted that was not the case.Everton shut down their facilities, with players and staff advised to self-isolate after an unnamed member of the squad showed symptoms of coronavirus.

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