Number 10 full of praise for ‘compassionate’ Gareth Southgate
Number 10 has heaped praise on Gareth Southgate, while stopping short of saying whether he should continue as England manager.
Rishi Sunak’s official spokesman said today that “the whole country can be proud” of Southgate and his players, after England exited the World Cup in the quarter finals on Saturday.
Speculation is rife over Southgate’s position as England manager, after refusing to commit to staying in the position last night.
Southgate said he had “found large parts of the last 18 months difficult”, after coming under intense scrutiny from English fans and parts of the media.
England lost 2-1 to reigning world champions France on Saturday, despite dominating large parts of the game.
When asked whether Southgate should stay as manager, Sunak’s spokesman said: “The whole country can be proud of the team’s efforts and of Gareth Southgate … he is doing a very difficult job with dignity, and compassion for his players.”
Southgate has a contract with the Football Association (FA) until after the Euros in Germany in 2024.
He has been one of England’s most successful ever managers, after taking the team to the semi-finals at the 2018 World Cup, the final at Euro 2020 and the quarter finals at this year’s World Cup.
“For everything that I’ve loved about the last few weeks, I still have [to think] about those 18 months,” Southgate said.
“What’s been said and what’s been written, the night at Wolves [losing 4-0 to Hungary], there are lots of things in my head that’s really conflicted at the moment, so what I want to make sure if it’s the right thing to stay, is that I’ve definitely got the energy to do that.”