Gareth Southgate says threat of racist abuse ‘another layer’ in deciding who to pick for England penalties | UK News


Gareth Southgate has said racist abuse aimed at England players during the Euro 2020 penalty shoot-out is “another layer” of complexity when thinking about who to select for crucial spot-kicks.

Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka received abuse online after missing their spot kicks against Italy last summer.

Asked if black players could now fear a racist backlash when they step up for penalties, the England manager said: “We’re goosed then. We’ve got 55 years of talking about penalties and everything else.

“So we’ve now got another layer that’s going to make it extremely difficult for us to win anything.”

Southgate, who famously missed his own penalty in Euro 96, was speaking ahead of England’s Nations League match on Tuesday with Germany.

He praised “massively courageous” Saka for having taken penalties for his club despite the abuse he got last year.

“But indirectly, we have created another layer of difficulty in overcoming a penalty shoot-out,” added Southgate.

“I have got to take all of those things into consideration and it is incredibly complex.”

Southgate said it appeared after the Euro disappointment that other big footballing nations had more players who regularly took penalties for their club.

Southgate is leading England into the World Cup in Qatar in November

“We only had (Harry) Kane and (Marcus) Rashford who was the second one in after Bruno Fernandes really.

“We have got to do that work. Maybe they are getting some practice with clubs, which definitely Chelsea and Liverpool did this year.

“But we’ve got to cover that work in our camps on the days we can and make it really focused and specific. We’re doing what we can. Psychology is definitely a part of it and I have to be aware of all of those things.”

England play Germany in Munich later after their weak performance against Hungary on Saturday; that 1-0 loss was also marred by booing from away fans when England took the knee.


Source link