Gareth Southgate has urged his young England team to stay calm when they look to make history by beating Italy in the Euro 2020 最後の.
The players were greeted by hordes of flag-waving fans when they left their base at St George’s Park in Staffordshire on Saturday night, and the stage is set for 66,000 supporters to fill Wembley, but Southgate does not want his side to become affected by the hype about ending “55 years of hurt”.
The manager adopted a composed tone before facing a dangerous イタリア team, saying he does not plan to give a rousing speech in the dressing room before kick-off, and believes his players must drown out the noise if they are to give the country its first major trophy since the 1966 ワールドカップ.
“I didn’t say very much at all before the semi-final because I felt the team were totally prepared,” Southgate said.
“I normally assess where they are during the day. We usually have a meeting about the set plays in the morning, and then I’ll speak to them before we leave the hotel.
“You’re two hours before the game at that point. You want the message to resonate but it’s about how you make the players feel as much as anything. We don’t need to be getting them overhyped. There will be enough energy and excitement around the stadium due to the occasion itself.
“We need to keep that calmness that we have had for the whole month. We’ve dealt with it really well. The game against Scotland, we were disappointed with how it went, but it was a big occasion for us. Germany was another one and then the quarter- and the semi-final. The players have coped remarkably well and I’m certain they will do so again.”
イングランド, whose men’s team have not been in a major final since 1966, have benefited from home advantage during the tournament, having played most their games at Wembley, and Southgate is proud of the connection his players have built with fans.
“The support has been phenomenal and it does make a huge difference to the players," 彼は言った.
“They are feeling the warmth and that connection and that energy in the stadium that makes it a huge advantage to play at home. The players have done an amazing job, firstly in the way they have played and the results they’ve gained, but also the way they’ve represented themselves. We’ve wanted the fans to be part of it because they’re important.”
Southgate urged England fans not to boo the Italian national anthem.
“We would always ask our fans to be respectful of the opposition," 彼は言った. “We would hope for the same when we travel and I know when our anthem is booed it does inspire me a bit more when I’m away from home.
“Whatever the intentions might be, there’s a good chance you’re giving more motivation to the opponent.”
England received a letter of support from Boris Johnson yesterday and the prime minister was joined in backing the team by the Queen, who praised their “spirit, commitment and pride”. The Queen recalled presenting the World Cup to England’s captain, Bobby Moore, に 1966.
The players were also treated to an audience with Tom Cruise on Friday night. The Hollywood star spoke to them on Facetime. “I was in a meeting watching videos of Italy but that’s another story,” Southgate said. “They’ve had a good week really. Ed Sheeran, Tom Cruise – the life of an England footballer.”
England are expected to be unchanged from their semi-final win over Denmark on Wednesday, but the midfielder, Phil Foden, is a doubt with an ankle injury.
Southgate said that England were aware of how they have captured the nation’s imagination during the past month. “Of course we’re aware of the heightened excitement and expectation," 彼は言った. “It’s lovely that the whole country seems to be really wrapped up in this tournament. When you drive past people and they’re tooting their horns and their flags are flying out the back of their cars it’s hard not to notice that.”