England: Southgate ‘bans’ topic at Euro 2024 to prevent ‘obsession’ with three players impacted

Lewis Oldham
England boss Gareth Southgate
Gareth Southgate has had plenty of criticism at Euro 2024.

According to reports, head coach Gareth Southgate has informed his England players of a ‘banned’ topic at this summer’s European Championships.

The Three Lions beat Switzerland on Saturday to book their place in the semi-finals of Euro 2024.

England had to battle back from behind to win as Breel Embolo broke the deadlock with 15 minutes of normal time remaining. This goal sparked Southgate‘s side into life and Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka curled home a stunning leveller five minutes later.

England overcame a couple of nervy moments to see out extra time before winning on penalties. Cole Palmer, Jude Bellingham, Saka, Ivan Toney and Trent Alexander-Arnold all converted, while Jordan Pickford saved Manuel Akanji’s effort as Southgate’s team won the shootout 5-4.

According to a report from The Mirror, ‘Southgate has used every trick in the book to improve England’s record in penalty shootouts’ and has ‘issued an unprecedented ban’ to prevent ‘players talking about spot-kicks’.

‘Southgate has used several strategies to improve England’s record at penalties, including a psychologist, analysts and intense practice sessions. But in this tournament, players have also been blocked from talking about shootouts in a clear attempt to stop it from becoming too much of an obsession.

‘England stars Jordan Pickford, Marc Guehi and Ezri Konsa have all been stopped from answering questions on penalties during this tournament.‌’

READ: Is Gareth Southgate ‘too liberal, wet and ghastly’ for you? He wins England games

Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer claims Southgate deserves credit for England’s progress at Euro 2024 and reveals his “main” takeaway from the win against Switzerland.

“Palmer, Bellingham, Saka, Toney, Trent. Pressure? What pressure?” Shearer said.

“Pressure is for tyres! It’s a different generation. They don’t feel it.

“How confident were they? They had the belief. They somehow found the energy to get themselves into the semi-final.”

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He added: “They’ll be absolutely ecstatic and so they should because they have put an incredible shift in.

“A big shout-out to the manager because he has missed a penalty, he knows what it feels like. He also knows the other side, in terms of being a manager.

“His preparation was absolutely key. The players he brought on to take penalties were just perfect.

“We know how pressurised that situation is and they made it look so easy.

“We’ve been wanting a performance. They could still do better but they’re through – that’s the main thing.”