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Gareth Southgate refuses to commit to England future after World Cup exit

The England manager will ‘take time’ to reflect on the World Cup after Southgate said the Three Lions lost a thrilling quarter-final to defending champions France in Qatar

Jamie Braidwood
Saturday 10 December 2022 21:48 GMT
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England fans react to Harry Kane's two penalties against France

Gareth Southgate did not commit to staying with England beyond the World Cup following their quarter-final defeat to France and said he will need “time” to reflect on his future.

The England manager accepted his team had missed an opportunity against the defending champions, who progressed to the semi-finals after Harry Kane missed a late penalty to equalise and send the match to extra time.

Kane had converted an earlier spot-kick to cancel out Aurelien Tchouameni’s excellent opener, before Olivier Giroud scored the winner with a header at the near post.

Southgate’s contract runs until the end of the European Championships in 2024 and the England manager said he will take “time to reflect” on the Qatar tournament before making a decision on his future.

Southgate led England to the World Cup semi-finals in 2018 and then the final of Euro 2020 last summer but the Three Lions had been set the target of winning the World Cup this month.

When asked about his future following England’s defeat, Southgate was non-committal and told ITV: “After every tournament, we’ve sat and reviewed and reflected. That needs a bit of time so everybody makes the right decisions.”

Southgate was positive about England’s display and said the Three Lions had deserved more from their performance.

“I just said to the players, I don’t think they could have done any more,” Southgate said. “I thought they played well against a top team, but it’s fine margins. I thought the way this group progressed throughout the tournament was fantastic.

(Getty Images)

“We were here to try and win the tournament, we thought we could, with this performance against the world champions, we could’ve done that.”

Southgate refused to put any blame on the performance of the Brazilian referee, Wilton Sampaio, and backed Kane after his captain’s late penalty miss.

“We win and lose as a team,” he said. “We’ve missed a few chances. He’s so reliable in those situations, we wouldn’t be here but for him.”

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