Southgate criticises Cole Palmer despite Chelsea star scoring first England goal vs Bosnia

Will Ford
Southgate Palmer England
Gareth Southgate was critical of Cole Palmer despite his first goal for England vs Bosnia.

Gareth Southgate had a bone to pick with Cole Palmer despite the Chelsea star scoring his first goal for England on his first start for his country against Bosnia.

England ran out 3-0 winners at St James’ Park, with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Harry Kane also finding the net after Palmer scored from the spot.

The Chelsea Player of the Seeason impressed besides as he looks to earn a spot on the plane for Euro 2024, linking up well with Eberechi Eze, who made a similar mark.

Southgate praise the young pair for the “freedom they showed” on Monday, but claimed Palmer was trying to be “too precise” when he had a couple of opportunities to score.

The England manager told Channel 4: “I thought they both played with the freedom.

“Ebere has got lovely movement to go past players, he’s got power. A couple of times, Cole was being too precise and if he got his shots away earlier maybe he could’ve got a couple.”


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On the performance as a whole, Southgate added: “We had an opponent that was dogged, determined, (there was a) good tempo to the game, so physically it was a good workout.

“We just had to be patient and we felt that in the end we’d create the chances. That’s how it turned out, really. I thought in the end the scoreline reflected the performance.”

But he gave no clues as to his thinking for his final 26-man squad, which also needs to be named on Friday.

He said: “The great thing is we’ve got through the last few days with no big problems.

“We needed to get through these first few matches and the finals that have been played to have a clearer picture, and the guys that have been rehabbing have progressed well.”

Asked if the display against Bosnia had given him any headaches, he said: “A little bit – but that’s a good thing.

“I’d rather we’d had good performances that caused you to think than poor performances. So there were lots of individual things that I was really pleased with.”