FA EXTEND SOUTHGATE DEAL

Having seen Gareth Southgate guide a young English side to the World Cup semi final recently, the Football Association is convinced that he is a long term managerial prospect and is looking to have him recruited not only for the Euro 2020, but beyond that as well, but with Southgate’s reputation having got enhanced massively of late and with the possibility of some of the Premier League sides trying to lure the English manager, FA might struggle to keep the hold of Southgate for that long a duration.

In comparison to what some of the managers are getting in the Premier League, Southgate is getting nothing from FA and FA knows that as well. The basic salary and the bonuses together mount Southgate’s England wages up to two and a half million pounds which is only about one-sixth of the wages that Jose Mourinho, the Manchester United boss, is receiving at old Trafford.
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England still need to improve

England’s last 2 international matches has seen the team of Roy Hodgson claiming victories over Norway and Switzerland but even with this string of triumphs, the English squad has a lot more to do if they want to forget about their disastrous 2014 World Cup campaign.

Their victory against Norway was especially underachieving as the final scoreboard displayed 1-0 with the only goal of the entire match arriving from a penalty kick of Wayne Rooney. England certainly won the match but there still was signs of players that still have not been able to perform at the level that is requested by fans.

The head coach of Queens Park Rangers, Harry Redknapp is the latest football figure to express his opinion about what is going on regarding the English team as he said that the players of the squad simply do not care about what happens at the international stage.

Harry Redknapp said: ’’It is disappointment after disappointment. Half the players don’t give a toss. The fans can’t be bothered to watch them. Managers of the Premier League clubs take an interest just to see if their players are going to come back injured from international duty.

‘I don’t blame the supporters for not being interested in England at the moment. Why should they be?

‘’We were told this is the start of a new era. Trust me, I hope so, I really do, but I’m not holding my breath because it will only get harder for England with the way things are in club football. And what possible value is there in a total non-event against the worst Norway team we have seen for years when the supporters are still sore from the World Cup shambles?’’

UEFA recently revealed that Wembley was going to be serving as the host for the semi-finals and the finals of the 2020 Euro’s.

England will have the chance to perform in front of their own fans at their home soil and this will certainly excite supporters who are still waiting for players of England to stand up and live up to all the expectations that is being demanded.

Gerrard Shocks With Retirement

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard surprised everyone by announcing his retirement from international football with immediate effect. The England captain has been one of the finest players for the national team over the last decade. He is just one short of the record held by David Beckham for the most number of appearances made by an outfield player. Gerrard, though, has announced his retirement meaning that he will be unable to break Beckham’s impressive record of 115 caps for the national team. It was widely speculated that the 34-year-old would retire after World Cup 2014.

However, a poor World Cup meant that England suffered an exit from the group stages. It would have been possible for Gerrard to extend his career in order to go out on a high since England manager Roy Hodgson was especially keen on this aspect. He had made Gerrard the captain for the World Cup with former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard assisting him. Despite lowering the age of the squad considerably, Hodgson has been sticking with experienced players like Gerrard and Lampard.

After the early exit from the World Cup, questions have been asking about Hodgson, but Gerrard reckons that the former Liverpool manager is the ideal man to lead the national team going into the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign.

“I’m sure Roy will get the job right. I know things will turn around for the better. I know the players are upset and everyone has an opinion on England at the moment – it’s very negative. But I’m sure Roy will help making the England supporters proud again and change the way people are looking at this England team. He’s a fantastic manager and I’m glad the FA have stuck with him. He’s the man who fulfilled my childhood dream, made me England captain,” said Gerrard.

Klinsmann Proud Of US Team

The United States came close to achieving a huge result by reaching the quarter-finals of the World Cup, but they were defeated 2-0 by Belgium in extra time. Despite this defeat, manager Jurgen Klinsmann has claimed that the players can return home with their head held high. The US were put in the ‘group of death’ and they were not expected to even qualify for the knockout stages. However, they joined Germany as the two teams to qualify from the group. They almost reached the quarter-finals by beating Belgium.

For long periods of the match it looked like United States would frustrate Belgium and take the match into penalties. The US goalkeeper Tim Howard had an exceptional match and created a record for the most number of saves made in a single match. However, he could not prevent former Chelsea midfielder Kevin De Bruyne from opening the scoring in the first few minutes of extra time. Then, Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku confirmed Belgium’s passage into the quarter-finals with a late goal.

The US now return home, but not without making a mark at the competition. As a result of the great performances from the team, viewership figures in North America have soared. President Barack Obama personally called up Tim Howard to congratulate on his performance.

“I’m very proud of our team. Every player on the field made their country proud with this performance in this World Cup. We are doing everything we can in every corner of the country to find the talent. We will continue to grow and grow, We are looking for all Americans around the world, no matter what background they have. It’s all part of globalisation. We have to learn more and more, we are in that process,” said the former Germany manager after the last 16 exit.

CARROLL HAS POINT TO PROVE

Former Liverpool striker Andy Carroll has stated that he wants to prove a point for both England manager Roy Hodgson and his former manager at Liverpool – Brendan Rodgers. Carroll is the record signing for Liverpool at £ 35 million after he arrived from Newcastle United with a big reputation. He was signed by former Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson, but his successor, Brendan Rodgers, did not expect him to fit into his style at the club. Hence, Liverpool had to take a huge hit on the 24-year-old and sell him for just £ 15 million in the summer.

He spent the last season on loan at West Ham and he made the move permanent for this massive transfer fee. He is widely regarded as the next best striker with the England squad. Wayne Rooney is undoubtedly the star name, but many reckon that Carroll should be the next name on the squad for Brazil. As West Ham prepare to face Liverpool on Sunday at Upton Park, Carroll, who has once again regained his fitness after being injured for most of the first six months of the campaign, is expected to start. He says that he wants to prove his former managers that he is capable of scoring goals given the opportunity.

“There’s no bitterness about Liverpool at all. I moved to West Ham and I’m loving it. Apart from the injury setback everything has been great but I’m looking forward to playing Liverpool on Sunday. They’re on fire at the minute and they’re the team to beat. Hopefully we can do it. I think we’re all confident we’re safe now. We’ve taken 18 points from the last nine games and it would be great to keep the run going,” said Carroll.

The 25-year-old has scored just two goals in 10 appearances this season, but his contribution has been immense all over the pitch.

HODGSON BACKS ENGLAND

England manager Roy Hodgson has stated that he is confident that the team will do well at the upcoming World Cup 2014. The national team has failed to deliver expectations in the previous major tournaments. They have not won a World Cup since 1966. Even though the English are nowhere near enough to being considered as favourites, Hodgson believes that the team will have a good World Cup since he is seeing a lot of promising signs over the last few months. Hodgson himself has not spoken about England lifting the trophy, but he is confident of giving a good account in Brazil.

England have not managed to get past the quarter-finals of a major tournament in recent decades. Even reaching the semifinals will be considered as a great achievement for this team especially considering that there are several youngsters in the squad. The Golden generation of Steven Gerrard, Paul Scholes, and Frank Lampard is almost over. England will be up against Uruguay, Costa Rica, and Italy in the group stages. This is seen as one of the tough groups since Uruguay and Italy will be the favourites to qualify.

England recently achieved a positive result by winning their friendly match against Denmark whereas all other group opponents lost their friendly matches.

“I think everyone is excited by this tournament. I think everyone’s quite excited by the fact that this is an England team in transition at the moment and there are some very interesting players who could be involved. I think we will be very well supported, not only in Brazil but back here in England as well, wherever the games are being shown. So I’m sure the players will do their best and I’m very confident that we’ll come away from the tournament having given a good account of ourselves,” said the 66-year-old.