King: England’s Defeat a ‘Wake-Up Call’ for Southgate’s Side, Still Favorites for Euro 2024

King: England’s Defeat a ‘Wake-Up Call’ for Southgate’s Side, Still Favorites for Euro 2024

Ledley King believes England’s 1-0 loss to Iceland on Friday is a reminder for the Three Lions to keep vigilant, but is convinced they can still go far at European Championships this summer.

Wembley and England fans were left stunned when Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson’s first-half strike was enough to topple Gareth Southgate’s in their final warm-up match before boarding the plane to Euro 2024.

The Three Lions – who are favourites to win the tournament- were booed off the pitch after the final whistle was blown, putting a dampener on spirits before an important summer.

King, who donned the England jersey in two major international tournaments, thinks the worrying result may not be a bad thing for Southgate’s squad.

‘The performance and result yesterday was a disappointing one, but sometimes that can be a good thing going into a tournament,’ King told Mail Sport.

Ledley King says that England’s loss to Iceland is a ‘wake-up call’ but it could be a good thing

England's loss to Iceland shocked fans but King does not think it's cause for too much concern

England’s loss to Iceland shocked fans but King does not think it’s cause for too much concern

He continued: ‘It keeps everyone alert, it’s a bit of a wake-up call for everyone. It’s a reminder how difficult it is to go on and win a competition.

‘I won’t read too much into it, I think we have a very strong squad and a very good chance to do very well in the tournament.’

The former Tottenham captain was speaking to Mail Sport at Paddy Power’s penalty shootout event at League One side Leyton Orient’s Brisbane Road, where five takers, and their friends, won a ticket to Euro 2024.

King knows the feeling of going to the Euros having made the squad in 2004, eventually appearing twice at the Championships in Portugal.

And while the 43-year-old understands the task ahead of this current England squad is a tough one, Friday’s loss has not dented their chance of winning the tournament in Germany this summer.

‘Before the tournament, I said we stand as good a chance as I can remember, I still believe we do have the strongest squad and even the strongest 11 of any teams.

‘There is a lot that comes into winning the tournament, a bit of luck here and there, players staying injury-free.

‘But I really believe that we are one of the favourites, if not the favourite, to go and do it in Germany.’

The 43-year-old, King (left), made two of his 21 Three Lions caps at Euro 2004 in Portugal

The 43-year-old, King (left), made two of his 21 Three Lions caps at Euro 2004 in Portugal 

And former England striker James Beattie also shares King’s confidence in Southgate’s crop of players.

When asked about who he thinks will win the Euros this summer, Beattie had an emphatic, but simple answer. ‘England,’ he said.

‘As any England fan would want England to win the Euros. It will be tough, but you have to live in hope.’

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