Postecoglou urges Southgate to play players in natural positions at Euro 2024

Postecoglou urges Southgate to play players in natural positions at Euro 2024

Ange Postecoglou has insisted a tactical adjustment is imperative for England to achieve ‘stability’ after their difficult start to Euro 2024.

Seemingly burdened with being named among the pre-tournament favourites, the Three Lions have so far flattered to deceive in Germany with an unbeaten start belying decidedly suboptimal performances.

Gareth Southgate has come under fire for his selection decisions, with Kieran Trippier deputising on his weaker side and a misfiring Phil Foden struggling to influence the game on the left flank.

Meanwhile, Trent Alexander-Arnold’s move to partner Declan Rice in midfield has so far failed to yield the creative output that so many had predicted that it might. 

No stranger to the stresses involved with international football, Postecoglou insisted reverting to a more stable starting XI would be to England’s benefit. 

Ange Postecoglou insisted England have to embrace the divisive reaction to their faltering Euro 2024 start

The Spurs boss added Gareth Southgate would be wise to deploy his team in their natural positions

The Spurs boss added Gareth Southgate would be wise to deploy his team in their natural positions

‘It’s fairly extreme, particularly here in England.’ The former Australia boss reflected on ITV.

‘It’s actually predictable that the England story is pretty similar. You’re go in with high expectations, and there’s extreme reactions either way. 

‘I think it’s part of I think when you represent England in particular, you need to embrace that. You need to understand that. And I think for the most part, the players seem to be understanding that. And also there’s a fair bit of experience in there. 

‘I know there’s a lot of reference points where people say, well, in other tournaments in England, have sometimes made radical changes, and it’s worked. I just don’t think that that’s the point they’re at at the moment. 

‘I’d like to see players just playing in their natural positions to start with. I think that’s your starting point. And I think if you can get midfielders in the midfield areas, wingers in the winger’s areas, and if that’s the way you want to play, I think that helps you get a little bit of stability. 

Thursday’s draw with Denmark marked the third successive major tournament in which England have picked up four points from their first two games.

However, despite sitting top of Group C, Postecoglou warned it would be unwise for Southgate’s men to rest on their laurels based on their performances in previous competitions.

‘I think experience does count in this scenario.’ Postecoglou continued.

‘Jordan [Pickford] referenced the last two tournaments quite a lot and I’m sure that’s the talk inside the camp. They’ve had four points before. 

Postecoglou added the Three Lions cannot rely solely on their experience at international tournaments

Postecoglou added the Three Lions cannot rely solely on their experience at international tournaments

Victory against Slovenia on Tuesday would guarantee their qualification as Group C winners

Victory against Slovenia on Tuesday would guarantee their qualification as Group C winners

 ‘I think the key to that though is you’ve still got to stay in the present. Just because you had four points in the past and things worked out ok, you still didn’t win. 

‘Doesn’t mean it’s gonna happen this time so I still think they’ve realised that there needs to be some impetus to their tournament now I think next game gives them the opportunity to do that.

‘Well, some momentum in terms of form, in terms of players maybe playing with a little bit more freedom and a little bit more confidence. Because I think if you don’t get that at some point in the tournament, it will get away from you.’

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