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Euro 2024: Bhaichung Bhutia labels Southgate as ‘major problem’ for England ahead of knockouts

Euro 2024: Bhaichung Bhutia labels Southgate as 'major problem' for England ahead of knockouts

New Delhi, June 28 (SocialNews.XYZ) English fans have been longing for the much-desired major trophy that the side has not won since the 1966 FIFA World Cup. Despite their squad consisting of world class talents throughout history, the Three Lions have never won the European Championship.

The team having the likes of Harry Kane, Bukayo Saka and Jude Bellingham amongst their ranks have been underwhelming in the group stage winning only one game whilst drawing the other two.


In an exclusive conversation with IANS, Indian football legend Bhaichung Bhutia spoke on the side's struggles and stated that a majority of the problems begin with English manager Gareth Southgate himself.

"I think Gareth Southgate has been one of the major problems for the England side. You've got one of the best players in the world today playing for England team, not just one, but you've got some of the best players in their position in the world playing for the England side.

"For the last five years, he's not been able to get the right combination, right formation for the team, which is so unfortunate. With that quality, attacking speed he's got, with the kind of frontline he's got right now, you still want to go into a defensive mindset?" Bhaichung told IANS.

The side who reached the final of the 2020 European Championship, was labelled as one of the favourites heading into this edition of the tournament but barely scraped to the top of Group C which consisted the likes of Slovenia, Serbia and Denmark which also resulted in them recording the lowest number of goals (7) across a group in Euros history.

"I think it's such a wrong approach towards the game. And when you can't utilise some of the best players and you can't get the right formation, that is not definitely the fault of the players, but it comes down to the manager, Gareth Southgate as well,” added the former Indian striker.

Given their poor start to the tournament, England will be positive for the upcoming knockout stages. They will be facing Slovakia on Sunday and will hope to gain much needed momentum.

Although they can potentially face Italy and Netherlands in the latter stages, they will be thanking the stars for being placed in a comparatively easier side of the bracket with teams like Germany, Spain, Portugal and France all placed on the opposite side.

"When you have quality, why don't you go play wonderful quality football and go on to win the tournaments rather than having that quality play defensive, negative mindset and win it? So, that is what I don't agree with Gareth Southgate," concluded the former Indian skipper.

Watch UEFA Euro 2024 Round of 16 on Sony Sports Network from Saturday, 8:30 PM IST onwards.

Source: IANS

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Euro 2024: Bhaichung Bhutia labels Southgate as 'major problem' for England ahead of knockouts

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