Southgate reminds England that they did not beat the USA in the World Cup


DOHA, Qatar (AP) England coach Gareth Southgate has indicated that his first-hand World Cup record is in favor of the United States.


This is correct. The Americans beat England 1-0 in the 1950 World Cup and the teams played to a 1-1 draw in 2010.

Their next match will take place on Friday in Qatar, and Southgate asked his players to go out and finally win a goal back.

“Have we ever beaten the United States in a major tournament?” asked Southgate during his pre-match press conference. “No, I didn’t think so. So we have to try tomorrow to make history.”

Southgate also poked fun at England’s reputation for building expectations as they searched for their first World Cup title since their sole triumph of the tournament in 1966.

“We’re good at it,” said Southgate. “We are good at speaking highly of ourselves as a nation on the basis of very little evidence. So what we need to do is perform on the field. We know we are going to play with a very motivated team.

“But we have a lot of respect for our opponents. We know a lot of players in our league. We have to be at our best. The danger is that we think because we played so well the other day we can only go to the next game.”

The England team should get a boost from having striker Harry Kane available for the Group B match. Kane, who was the top scorer at the 2018 World Cup, did not score in Iran’s opening 6-2 win but injured his left ankle.

“Harry is good,” said Southgate. “It would be a brave decision to leave him out.”

England must also win back Harry Maguire after the defender left the opener with a blurred vision.

For now, he is trying to focus his eyes on the World Cup and not the turmoil at Manchester United.

“I’m here with England,” said the defender. “I’m playing in the World Cup – the greatest tournament in the world. So it was easy for me to get away from distractions. I’m completely focused on winning every game I play for my country.”

A lot has happened at his club since Maguire traveled to Qatar with the rest of the England squad. Fellow Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract was terminated after an explosive interview in which he criticized manager Erik ten Hag, the club’s owners and some players. News soon followed that the Glazer family was poised to put United up for sale as they sought outside investment.

Maguire said: “Yes, there was obviously a lot of talk going around the club at the moment, but I’ve been fully focused on England and that’s my priority.”

Maguire, whose poor form for United saw him sacked by Ten Hag, has been a key figure in England’s success in their last two tournaments – reaching the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and the final of last year’s European Championship, which they lost. In a penalty shootout against Italy.

“It’s obviously a huge privilege to be chosen for your country,” said Maguire, who is set to make his 50th national team cap against the United States. “It is the pinnacle of anyone’s football career to play in the major tournaments for your country, the World Cup in particular. It is the biggest tournament in the world.”


James Robson is in


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