Gareth Southgate warns critics not to write England off because of his traits

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    Gareth Southgate fears he will never convince some doubters he's the right man to manage England.

    But Southgate has warned his critics to never underestimate his fierce desire to succeed. Southgate is approaching 100 games as England boss and has led the Three Lions to a Euros final and World Cup semi final.

    He will go down as one of the most successful England bosses of all time – and admits he's proud of how he's united a nation and handled the pressure of having one of the toughest jobs in sport. But he also knows there will always be some people queuing up to knock him.

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    Southgate said: "You take charge of one of the most high-pressured jobs in world football – and have to manage some of the biggest matches in world football. There is only a World Cup final that we haven't done.

    "You understand what that means in the longer term, in terms of what you have learned. What you have taken from those experiences, and the fact we have dealt with those challenges and pressure, which can sometimes really inhibit people.

    "Frankly, a lot of people could not cope with that pressure, so I feel pleased we have shown that we can do that. I'm sure there will have been a lot of doubts some years ago, whether I was capable of doing that .

    "And of course, there will be other doubts people will have and that will always be the same. You will always have questions asked of you."

    A measure of how popular England have become under Southgate can be found in the fact Wembley will be sold out on Friday for a Euro qualifier against Malta with little at stake – because his side have made it to Germany next summer.

    And Southgate insists people shouldn't be fooled into thinking his calm demeanour means he doesn't want to win. He added: "It’s just implicit in everything that you do.

    "I don’t get up at 5 in the morning and come home from games at 3 in the middle of the night because I’ve got no interest in winning. I know I may not scream and be like a banshee on the sidelines, but that doesn’t mean that you want to win any less than other people."

    • Gareth Southgate
    • England Football Team

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