Gareth Southgate is adamant that England can handle the pressure of being one of the favorites to win Euro 2024.
Tuesday’s convincing 3-1 victory against Italy at Wembley secured Southgate’s team a spot in the tournament that will be held in Germany the following year.
Thanks to two goals from Harry Kane each side of Marcus Rashford’s goal, England overcame Gianluca Scamacca’s early goal to defeat the Italians.
After a successful qualifying campaign that confirmed their standing as one of Europe’s finest teams, England is already assured of finishing first in Group C with two games remaining.
England is anticipated to put up a strong fight for the championship in Germany after losing the European Championship final to Italy on penalties two years ago. During the Southgate era, England also advanced to the World Cup semifinals and quarterfinals.
Southgate has no reservations about accepting England’s status as one of the top contenders and is certain that his team can carry the load.
“I believe we must acknowledge that. According to reality, we are going to be one of the teams capable of winning, therefore pressure arises when expectations differ from reality, he stated.
Other people exist. Just by looking at the top 10 European countries, you can tell which one will win any given game. However, we’re okay with that.
Italy was defeated by England in the Euro final, and England made up for it by defeating them twice in the group stage, putting the current champions in jeopardy of not making it.
Southgate claimed that his team’s success in a group that included Ukraine demonstrated its growth.
“This team still has more to offer. With the seedings, this qualifying group was the hardest. We’ve received criticism for not defeating top teams frequently enough. However, we have done pretty well, he remarked.
The biggest thing for us is the mentality, but we have to keep winning big matches like tonight.”
He’s been a catalyst, and England will need the best performances from Kane and Jude Bellingham if they want to win their first men’s international trophy since the 1966 World Cup.
With his two goals, Kane surpassed Bobby Charlton to become England’s all-time leading scorer at Wembley with 24 goals. He now has 61 goals for his country.
Only Nat Lofthouse has scored two or more goals in a game for England on a greater number of occasions than Kane’s eleven doubles for the nation.
“He’s a top-level player, but it’s easy to underestimate him because we’ve had him for so long,” Southgate said.
“All of that is good,” said the coach, “and he’s also in a new experience at a different club where he’s looking to win trophies, with a different sort of focus and pressure as the big signing there.”
While Kane scored England’s goals against Italy, the brilliant Bellingham set the groundwork for the team’s triumph.
The 20-year-old kept up the form he displayed during a stellar start to his first season at Real Madrid, dominating in all areas of the game.
Kane’s penalty for the equalizer was awarded as a result of Bellingham’s tenacious dash into the area.
In addition, he assisted in setting up England’s second goal by tracking back to break up a tackle, charging forward, and finding Rashford to break the Italian defense.
Bellingham received high acclaim from his management and was regarded as one of the top players in the world even at such a young age.
Jude’s mentality is extraordinary for his age, according to Southgate.
He has acted as a catalyst. I only believe that his demeanor and style of play demonstrate this. Frankly, he’s had it ever since he entered the room.
“To be so mature but also humble at such a young age, to make such an impression. Our good fortune in having him.
England won’t have any justifications if they leave Germany empty-handed since they have Bellingham and Kane in their ranks.