Jump directly to the content

News Corp is a network of leading companies in the worlds of diversified media, news, education, and information services.

DREAM TEAM

Your Sun

A News UK Company
TOP
LEADER

Gareth Southgate’s pre-match team talk is the perfect example of England’s new spirit

The manager pinpointed what brings this team together and it might make you emotional

Arise, Sir Gareth Southgate.

That’s what they’ll say if he achieves what most of us thought was impossible three weeks ago.

Yes, there’s still a long way to go and Sweden could prove to be uncomfortable opponents, but let a boy dream eh?

Mood.

Getty - Contributor
5
Mood.

It’s been two days now and it still doesn’t feel real that England won that dramatic penalty shootout against Colombia, in a World Cup.

And there is something different in this team, not only the lack of ego or superstars but the unwavering of confidence Southgate appears to be instilling in them.

It is a sight to behold.


CLAIM YOUR FREE £20 BET Sun Bets have this brilliant offer when you sign up and bet a fiver


Magnanimous in victory

Reuters
5
Magnanimous in victory

And nothing proves how much of an inspirational leader Southgate really is more than the words he laid on the players before they took to the field against Los Cafeteros.

If you can imagine Sven Goran Eriksson or Fabio Capello speaking in such terms then you are a better man than me.

The message was all about unity.

“OK lads, Vardy is going to be organising the party when we win this.”

AP:Associated Press
5
“OK lads, Vardy is going to be organising the party when we win this.”

The waistcoat-wearing hero began by focusing on the players backgrounds and how so many of them had a shared journey to football’s highest stage.

Instead of being pampered through Premier League academies, the majority of this squad have put in the hard yards in lower league loan moves to become the players they are today.

They’ve worked their way up and Southgate believes these shared paths are fundamental to England’s success.

Alli just one of the players who started in the lower leagues

Action Images - Reuters
5
Alli just one of the players who started in the lower leagues

“I talked to them about where they had all started and the different clubs,” the England manager said.

“You have to be savvy. You have to be tactically aware because that’s what makes the difference in the big matches. But they also have humility about them.

“We work hard for each other, we don’t carry anybody. They are all prepared to graft and dig in for each other.

“I know those are slightly old-fashioned qualities but we don’t have the right to stroll around a football pitch. We play with character and I love that about them.”

And we love you Gareth. 

A very strange sight

Getty Images - Getty
5
A very strange sight

The tactical awareness Southgate was referring to was plain for everyone to see as England fronted up to Colombia’s snide tactics and were not naive when it mattered most.

Bravo gentlemen.