Sven-Goran Eriksson warns England players they ‘can’t act like divas’ if they want World Cup glory…as former Three Lions boss insists Gareth Southgate is doing a ‘great job’ despite facing pressure to succeed in Qatar
- England are set to start their World Cup campaign in less than three weeks
- Sven-Goran Eriksson thinks Gareth Southgate is ‘doing a great job’ in charge
- But the Swede has warned England players to stick together in Qatar.
- He feels that if they start acting like ‘divas’, it could stop the team.
Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson has warned the current team not to act like ‘divas or stars’ in Qatar if they want to reach the World Cup final.
In his six years in charge, Southgate has led England to a World Cup semi-final and the European Championship final, which they lost to Italy on penalties at Wembley. However, they have not won any of their last six matches heading into this year’s tournament.
Despite the pressure on Southgate, Eriksson believes the 52-year-old is “doing a great job”. He has praised the England manager for bringing the team together and feels maintaining this cohesion will be key if the Three Lions are to succeed in the World Cup.
Sven-Goran Eriksson has said that England players must not like to act like ‘divas’ in Qatar
Gareth Southgate is under pressure to succeed but Eriksson thinks he is doing a ‘great job’
Asked what he thought of Southgate, Eriksson told Sky Sports: ‘He’s doing a great job. It’s great to have a lot of stars in the team, but they can’t act like divas and stars. He has to be one of the 26 players, that’s important.
And they have to work together, they have to help each other and respect each other, whatever you are, what club you come from, how much money you make. You are here to make England great, and I think Southgate is doing that.”
With less than three weeks to go until the World Cup, Southgate is sweating over the fitness of a number of key players, with Kyle Walker, Reece James and Kalvin Phillips currently sidelined.
Eriksson knows what it’s like to deal with injuries so close to a tournament, and has complained about his fortunes when in charge of England.
Eriksson knows what it’s like to lose at the World Cup, having been beaten in the quarter-finals twice by England.
‘The three big tournaments I was in charge of, we were unlucky with injuries. The first was Beckham. The second in Portugal was Michael Owen, and the third was Rooney who was injured before”, he continued.
And of course there are three important players for England, key players, I would say. So a bit of bad luck.
Having not won any of their games in the recent Nations League campaign, England may not go into the World Cup full of confidence.
However, Eriksson has hinted that that doesn’t necessarily matter, as he admitted he expected England to reach the World Cup final when he was on the bench in 2006, only to see his side advance to the quarter-finals before being removed. out for Portugal.
Speaking about that tournament in Germany, Eriksson added: ‘We weren’t brilliant. But before the tournament and during the tournament, I was pretty sure that we would make it to the final. Because I couldn’t see any better team than us in that tournament.