Jamie Carragher claims Gareth Southgate CAN take England to their first major final since 1966 with his ‘determination to stand by what he believes’… but Liverpool legend insists Harry Kane’s form is STILL a concern despite goal against Germany
Southgate had come in for some criticism from fans and pundits after a lacklustre group stage included narrow wins over Croatia and the Czech Republic, as well as a dour 0-0 stalemate with Scotland.
Jamie Carragher has praised Gareth Southgate for how he has handled being England boss
But Carragher insists the 50-year-old’s ability to shut out the noise makes him one of the strongest characters to hold the England managerial role for some time.
‘Whether you agree with this manager’s selections and tactics or not – and there will always be more supporters in retrospect when it works out – as a package these decisions demonstrate Southgate possesses one of the most important characteristics of any coach working at the highest level. He is always true to himself,’ Carragher wrote in his Telegraph column.
‘He does not play to the public gallery. And unlike previous managers Southgate is never influenced by the media when picking his team. Add that to the list of bad habits he witnessed in some of the England managers he played for, and vowed never to repeat.
Southgate led England to their first knockout phase victory over Germany since 1966
‘Southgate’s determination to stand and fall by what he believes to be right for this England side has already carried them to a World Cup semi-final. It might take them even further in this tournament.’
England’s spot in the last eight was secured by goals from Raheem Sterling and a first at this summer’s tournament for Harry Kane.
Other pundits, such as the BBC’s Alan Shearer, suggested the goal could ignite the Tottenham striker’s tournament.
However, Carragher warns that the captain’s overall game should still be a cause for concern for Southgate and his coaching staff.
Carragher has warned that, while he scored, Harry Kane is still not firing on all cylinders
‘The longer England are in with a chance of winning it, the more Southgate has to find an answer to the Kane problem,’ he added.
‘Anyone who says it was eradicated after Kane scoring in the final moments must know that camouflaged the flaws of the previous 86 minutes.
‘My concerns about Kane have nothing to do with his goal return. He has not been contributing enough in general play.
‘Germany’s Mats Hummels, a centre-back in the twilight of his career, had his easiest game of the tournament, Kane’s lack of movement or physical presence making him a passenger when the game could still have gone either way.’
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