Next England manager: Owen picks his preferred Southgate replacement as pundit snubs Lampard

Lewis Oldham
England replace Southgate
Graham Potter and Eddie Howe have been mentioned as potential replacements for Gareth Southgate.

Michael Owen has selected the manager he’d like to see replace Gareth Southgate as England manager after this summer’s European Championship.

Southgate has been England’s manager since 2016 and Wednesday’s match against the Netherlands at Euro 2024 will be his third semi-final as Three Lions boss.

The 53-year-old has been heavily criticised during this tournament as England have underperformed in most of their matches, but they have beaten Slovakia and Switzerland in the knockout stages to reach the semi-finals.

It remains to be seen whether Southgate will be England’s manager heading into the World Cup in 2026 as his current contract is due to expire at the end of this year.

Presenter Gary Lineker has called for the Football Association to appoint a former Chelsea manager, while Owen claims there is “not an outstanding candidate” to replace Southgate.

“There is not an outstanding candidate to take over if Southgate goes,” Owen said.

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“I personally am of the opinion that we should stick to an English manager, that’s what international football is about. In fact I would almost go as far as to say there should be a rule change. You are playing for your country, the players are going to be from that country.

“In club football you can have any player or coach from any country but I think when you’re playing for your country it should be Scottish managers, Scottish players and Scottish physios. That’s the point. Same with France. That’s the point of international football.”

Owen does however call for England to appoint Graham Potter ahead of four alternatives “if Southgate were to leave tomorrow”.

“It’s not a rule but I would have that principle and would like England to have an English manager,” Owen added.

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“I think possibly the one manager free and available is Graham Potter, who may take it. Apart from him, I think Steve Cooper is a good manager, Frank Lampard and [Steven] Gerrard would have been tipped in the past but they probably need to do well in their current jobs to be back in the fold maybe.”

He continued: “Eddie Howe I really see as a top manager but he’s employed at the moment. As things stand, if Southgate were to leave tomorrow I’d probably say Potter.”