Gareth Southgate to remain England’s manager until Euro 2024

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London, Dec 18

Gareth Southgate will remain as England's manager until the European Championships in 2024, the Football Association (FA) confirmed on Sunday.

After England's quarterfinal exit at the FIFA World Cup 2022, Southgate had said he was conflicted about his future in the role. His current contract is due to expire in December 2024 and he will now remain in charge of England for what will be his fourth major tournament at the helm.

The 52-year-old, who was appointed in 2016, led the Three Lions to the World Cup semifinals in 2018 and a first Euros final in 2021.

"We are delighted to confirm that Gareth Southgate is continuing as England manager and will lead our Euro 2024 campaign," said FA chief executive Mark Bullingham in a statement.

"Gareth and Steve Holland (assistant manager) have always had our full support, and our planning for the Euros starts now,'' he added.

The former defender, who made 57 appearances for England has won 49 of his 81 games in charge so far, losing 14. But his record of winning six knockout games in major tournaments as Three Lions boss is the same number as England had won in the 48 years before he took the helm.

Despite the growing expectation put on his team, Southgate is yet to deliver the silverware so longed for. His side suffered a 2-1 defeat by Croatia in the last four of the 2018 World Cup in Russia after leading 1-0, while England were beaten on penalties by Italy in the Euro 2020 final after also leading that match.

In the build-up to this year's FIFA World Cup, there had been significant criticism of Southgate following a run of poor results. Relegation to League B of the Nations League after losing twice to Hungary, drawing two against Germany and a draw and defeat to Italy led to serious questions being asked about his future.

And, even after a positive response to the team's run to the last eight in the World Cup, Southgate stressed he needed a period of reflection to decide on the best course of action.

"I think, whenever I finish these tournaments, I've needed time to make correct decisions," he said after their 2-1 defeat by France.

"Emotionally you go through so many different feelings. The energy it takes through these tournaments is enormous. I want to make the right decision, whatever that is, for the team, for England, and the FA. I've got to be sure whatever decision I make is the right one,'' he added.

Southgate previously managed England Under-21s from 2013 to 2016 and was also in charge at Middlesbrough from 2006 to 2009.

-- IANS

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