ENGLAND manager Gareth Southgate has vowed to select players based on form not reputation while admitting that the team’s current world ranking of 13th is just not good enough.
Southgate, who replaced Sam Allardyce on an interim basis in September and was named full-time manager in November after four matches in charge, has been tasked with reviving England’s fortunes after a disastrous Euro 2016 campaign.
‘I’m very conscious I’ve got to get the balance right because ultimately my responsibility is to produce a winning England team,’ he said.
‘I never pick on reputation — form has to come into it. You have to look at the opposition and the type of game you’re expecting and select the players best suited to that.
‘Even being second in the world isn’t good enough, we have to be the best we can be’
‘We have players of great potential but at the moment we’re 13th in the world. We’ve got to be better, everything we do has got to be better.
‘Even being second in the world isn’t good enough, we have to be the best we can be, and that’s the best.’
In the interview with the Daily Telegraph, Southgate also said his side needed to develop the same ruthless mentality that Eddie Jones has instilled in the country’s rugby team whose last-gasp win over Wales on Saturday extended their winning run to 16.
‘It’s clear they don’t believe they can be beaten. That plays a huge role,’ said Southgate, who paid a recent visit to watch Jones’ team train (above).
‘You get a sense of the culture that’s there.’