Sports News Today

Gareth Southgate: England boss seeks redemption for Euro 96 penalty miss


New England manager Gareth Southgate says his side have the potential to give him closure by winning the European Championship in 2020.

Southgate, whose position was confirmed on a four-year deal on Wednesday, missed a penalty at Wembley in hosts England’s semi-final shootout defeat by eventual champions Germany at Euro 96.

Wembley will host the semi-finals and final of Euro 2020.

“That’s clearly in the back of everybody’s mind,” he said.

The 46-year-old, during a Football Association fans’ question and answer session, added: “Having played in the last European Championship here in 1996 and got so close as a player, I have a desire to address that record.

“That something that I think is a realistic aim for the team given the age and the way they’ll mature in the next few years in particular.”

Former defender Southgate, who made 57 appearances for England as a player, becomes the fourth permanent manager of the national team in as many years.

The former England Under-21 coach, who had a four-game stint as interim manager following Sam Allardyce’s departure, will face Germany in Dortmund on 22 March in his first game as permanent manager.

Southgate’s first tournament at the helm, qualification allowing, will be the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Before becoming part of the international set-up, Southgate’s only managerial experience was his three-year spell at Middlesbrough, who were relegated under him in 2009.

But it was his understanding of international football and the development set-up at St George’s Park that proved important to his appointment, according to FA chief executive Martin Glenn.

What is Southgate’s top priority?

Analysis from Phil McNulty, chief football writer

Simple and difficult at the same time – win matches at major tournaments.

England have no trouble racking up victories in qualifiers. They have won 24 and drawn eight of their past 32 but in world terms they have gone backwards because they do not win when it matters.

Hodgson won all 10 Euro 2016 qualifiers yet lost in the last 16 to Iceland in Nice.

He strode a similarly comfortable path to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and yet England did not make it out of the group stage.

Fabio Capello’s England were humiliated 4-1 by Germany in the last 16 in South Africa in 2010, while the side that qualified comfortably for Euro 2012 lost in their first knockout match, to Italy on penalties, under the recently appointed Hodgson.

It is a pattern Southgate is charged with changing – and he must do it by summer 2018.

He must find the answer to making the England shirt weigh less when measured by pressure and break down the psychological barrier that grips talented players when the heat is on. It has eluded more experienced managers than him.

Subscribe to the BBC Sport newsletter to get our pick of news, features and video sent to your inbox.

BBC Sport – Football