The coward Southgate goes down the well trodden path

of England failure.

Southgate bottled out of dropping a right-back as he copied most of his predecessors in picking a squad full of those injured and out of form.

It’s the same old routine, new England manager says in their first press conference that they’ll only take those that are fit and in form to tournaments and as soon as the tournament comes round there’s the manager’s favourites, injured and inept.

Southgate said as he announced the squad of right-backs…

Basically they are in the best 26 footballers and that is why they are in the squadGareth Southgate

The mentality that’ll lead to disappointment. It’s not about individuals it’s about the team, it’s what Sir Alf said to Big Jack…

I asked him [Alf Ramsey] ‘Why me?’ and he said ‘Well, Jack, hay ‘ave a pattern of play in may mind, an’ hay pick the happropriate players to fit into that pattern. Hay don’t always necessarily pick the best players [a pause] Jack’. Jack Charlton

Four right-backs. Southgate claims it’s due to the fact they can play in different positions. Well, we all know that it’s due to him being scared of dropping one of them and all of them have something you could drop ’em for.

I posted on Twitter a couple of days back…

James can’t pass the ball forward, just look at Chelsea in the CL final – where apparently he was the best player on planet earth. How many times were they up at the City box and the ball was played back to the halfway line because James had positioned himself so that for it to go forward he would have had to use his left foot and he can’t use his left foot. So a promising attack is heading back to the defence or keeper. For England his forward passes amounts to one in seven. You don’t want that ball heading back to Stones, Maguire or Pickford under any pressure.

Walker is gormless. Yes he can run, they keep telling us how great he is at running but then so was Forrest Gump. Trent Alexander-Arnold, like so many Liverpool players just doesn’t seem to play the same for his country as he does for his club. And Trips, an excellent deliverer of the ball but well he’s a bit slow for a fullback.

Looking at the numbers the players have been given shows a back four of Walker, Stones, Maguire and Shaw, with Pickford in goal. There you have a defensive five in which four of them are prone to some sort of stupidity during the game that’ll cost a goal.

A midfield of Henderson and Rise. So there’s nothing coming from that pair creatively. Grealish has the number 7 but unlike the rest you can’t see him starting. Southgate, apparently, thinks he’ll slow things down playing at his own speed. Erm, has Southgate seen his number 10, Sterling? How many times has a quick England break been stopped because faced with an open field Sterling has stopped to let the defender get back on him, so he can beat a player? Which usually results in Sterling running into the defender and losing the ball, see the CL final.

And there’s the other rub, Sterling and Rashford up front with Kane. The former two being well out of form. Sterling being a surprise choice for the CL final, a gamble that really backfired, who hasn’t featured much for City this year. He thinks he’s going to get a new contract to put him on the same level as De Bruyne. Yeah, right. More like they’ll give him something so they can ask for more money when they try and sell him this off season. While Rashford was anonymous for united in the EL final.

No doubt either Mount or Foden will start instead of Grealish and maybe one of them instead of Sterling. But if that’s the case then expect to see Kane dropping deep, dropping wide and generally being all over the pitch in a vain attempt to touch the ball. He won’t be getting much service from Gareth’s favourites.

Can England be saved by injuries – Henderson and Maguire pulling up before the tournament kicks off – and suspensions – Walker giving away a penalty with a stupid pull.

Because as I’ve said so many times before… if England do anything it’ll be despite Southgate not due to him…

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