England coach Southgate appreciates Euro 2024 semifinal victory amid previous criticism, emphasizing everyone’s desire for love

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Gareth Southgate celebrates after winning the match

Gareth Southgate has been continuously criticized as England’s manager during Euro 2024. Making it to the final could reignite a strong connection with the team’s fans.

Once revered by supporters and holding the most consistent track record of any England manager, Southgate faced plastic cups thrown by unhappy fans at one match and criticism from British TV commentators for his cautious tactics.

Wednesday’s 2-1 victory over the Netherlands in the Euro 2024 semifinals might change perceptions. Southgate’s team played with a more aggressive style for much of the game, and his decision to substitute captain Harry Kane paid off when substitute Ollie Watkins scored a thrilling last-minute goal.

“We all want to feel appreciated, don’t we? When you’re representing your country and you’re a proud Englishman, it’s tough when you don’t feel that support and all you hear is criticism,” Southgate said, acknowledging England’s traveling fans.

Gareth Southgate talks to the players

“If I weren’t on the field, I’d be watching and celebrating like them. We share a bond in many ways, but of course, I’m the one who has to select the team. So, to give them a night like tonight is incredibly special.”

Southgate was once seen as someone who brought England’s fans back to the team, reigniting their passion. Supporters sang his praises, and the waistcoat he wore at the 2018 World Cup became an iconic symbol of his leadership in his first major tournament.

However, a heartbreaking loss to Italy in the Euro 2020 final on penalties seemed to expose the limitations of his cautious approach, as England failed to hold onto an early 1-0 lead.

During Euro 2024, England’s journey to the semifinals against the Netherlands included some challenging moments. They didn’t register a shot on goal until late in added time against Slovakia in the round of 16 and scored crucial goals in the 80th minute against Switzerland in the quarterfinals to keep their hopes alive.

Kai Soriano

By Kai Soriano

Kai Soriano, hailing from the picturesque archipelago of the Philippines, is not just your average writer. With a flair for capturing the essence of the NFL through words, Kai stands out as a leading NFL Content Writer. Blending his passion for sports with his impeccable writing skills, he delivers content that is both engaging and insightful. Dive into his pieces, and experience the game as if you're right there on the field! 🏈

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