Southgate believes England can emulate the heroes of 1966

Southgate believes England can emulate the heroes of 1966

England manager Gareth Southgate believes that the Three Lions can emulate the heroics of 1966 and bring the World Cup home.

The former Middlesbrough boss says he thinks England winning the tournament this summer could merit an even bigger reaction to the one that the squad of 1966 had, but there is still a long way to go yet.

Southgate was a relatively unpopular choice to replace Sam Alardyce as England manager by the general public, but he has more than turned the tables now with him arguably being one of the most hailed figures in the country.

England have had a fantastic campaign in Russia so far, reaching a semi-final for the first time in 28 years following Saturday’s 2-0 defeat of Sweden.

It means the Three Lions are just one win away from the World Cup final, an achievement only Sir Alf Ramsey’s team of 1966 have managed before.

“We’ve talked, touched briefly, certainly, on the team which won,” said Southgate. “How they’re still held and revered.

“(It was) at the beginning of working together with the lads and trying to sell them the vision of what’s possible, what we’re looking to achieve in the long-term.

“We have had events on in camp when some of those guys have been in, when the road was named at St George’s (Park) after Sir Alf.

“I’ve met quite a few of those players and we know exactly how they’re held and perhaps, in the modern era, that would be even crazier.

“Social media and everything else, the global thing is so much bigger.”

Southgate and his staff will assess their squad ahead of Wednesday as the games start to mount up.

“Of course you get an accumulation of fatigue through a tournament,” said the manager.

“That’s why we took the decision we did against Belgium (to rest players) more than anything.

“So we’ll just have to assess people as we go. Hendo (Jordan Henderson) was another one who was feeling tightness in his hamstring, which was why we made the change (taking him off in the closing stages).

“We’ll just have to assess the bodies.”
[Quotes via Sky Sports]