Paul Merson says England can ‘blow groups away’ at Euro 2020 in the event that they play at Premier League tempo

England can win Euro 2020 if they will carry their Premier League tempo to the match however their warm-up friendlies have been a “waste of time”, says Paul Merson.

Second favourites England begin their match towards Croatia on Sunday, and are available into the match on the again of two underwhelming warm-up pleasant victories over Austria and Romania.

The magic man, who represented England at Euro 1992 and World Cup 1998, instructed Sky Sports activities what they should do to maintain up their vivid file in dwelling tournaments, and put behind their recollections of a dismal exit to Iceland on the final European Championships 5 years in the past.

England can win it – if we deal with it just like the Premier League

Now we have to play at a tempo. If we play prefer it’s the Premier League, like Man Metropolis and Chelsea did towards Actual Madrid, Atletico Madrid, PSG, they can’t stay with it, the opposite international locations.

That’s the reason all people world wide desires to observe the Premier League. It’s a hundred miles an hour, there is a shot at one finish, a nook on the different 30 seconds later, we’ve to play that method. What I’ve discovered within the final couple of video games, is we kick-off, after which play the Fulham method! We roll the ball again to the centre-half, he takes one, two, three touches, he rolls it throughout to the subsequent centre-half, he rolls it again to the goalkeeper, and we’re taking part in the Fulham method. If we do this, we’ve not received an opportunity, not an opportunity.

Now we have to shut down from the entrance, play with tempo and power, and we’ll stroll it. Over 90 minutes, of that many video games of a match in a month, we might blow groups away. The Scotland recreation would possibly go well with us, will probably be like a Premier League recreation. They aren’t going to mess about rolling out from the again, however Croatia are going to allow us to move it round all evening lengthy if we wish.

Gareth’s tried to get his group filled with tempo and power. It was not lengthy earlier than Wayne Rooney was out, not due to his expertise, due to his age. He has received that tempo and power in now. If he isn’t going to play that method although, Wayne Rooney may nonetheless be in! Nobody’s received higher imaginative and prescient than him, we noticed it the opposite day with (James) Ward-Prowse, he can spray the ball all over, however we’ve to play at a excessive tempo.

I don’t suppose it’s Gareth slowing it down, I believe it’s the gamers. You heard the opposite day he went mad on the gamers not closing down, and the second half was significantly better, we went after them and so they couldn’t cope. I understand how Gareth desires to play, it is the gamers taking part in secure, not wanting to offer the ball away, let another person give it away. If that occurs, we might be chasing shadows.


Sky Sports activities pundit Gary Neville says coping with the harm to centre-back Harry Maguire might be England supervisor Gareth Southgate’s greatest conundrum at Euro 2020.

Semi-finals or bust for Southgate?

The strain’s solely on as a result of we’ve received a superb squad. Don’t let anyone inform you in any other case, this group’s anticipated to ship, it’s anticipated. It is how they deal with that. When you get off to a superb begin, it is confidence. I’ve seen the most effective gamers on the earth wrestle with confidence, then it will get arduous. If we begin badly, then it is a roll-on.

You do not need to be taking part in strain soccer dropping 1-0 to Croatia, after which hastily the Scotland recreation is a cup ultimate, going into that underneath extreme strain the place they’ve nothing to lose and we’ve received all the pieces to lose. That is harmful soccer.

Gareth’s underneath extreme strain too. On the World Cup, nobody was anticipating a lot, and this group’s received so many good gamers in it, whoever he doesn’t choose, he will get it unsuitable. If we play Croatia and draw 0-0 and Grealish or Rashford don’t play, folks will say why did not these two play? In the event that they do play and we draw 0-0, individuals are going to say why did not Sancho or Sterling play, they’re pure wingers. It is a arduous one.

Now we have received to get to the semi-final, at the least, for me. We’re at dwelling, each recreation is at Wembley if we win the group, it is such a bonus. We go on about this group, it is received expertise, it is received kids, it is received to be minimal semi-finals. Each nation does properly once they host, actually. Keep in mind South Korea getting by to the semi-finals in 2002?

Heat-ups ‘a waste of time’

Being trustworthy, I assumed the 2 pleasant video games have been an absolute waste of time. I’m watching a group that is not going to be the group, so what is the level? Do not play them. They could as properly have a few video games between themselves. You’re taking part in all of the gamers who’re going dwelling anyway, so it appeared like a complete waste of time.



Former England winger Stewart Downing thinks Gareth Southgate should discover a solution to begin Jack Grealish at Euro 2020.

Except you’re taking part in the group, getting patterns, even 45 minutes simply to see the way it’s working, at the least in coaching you’ll be able to then present them the place they went unsuitable or no matter. However that group on Sunday, you’re simply throwing them out. He’ll know his group, don’t get me unsuitable, however they haven’t performed collectively for some time. It simply felt like a waste of time.

You’ve got to look and suppose they haven’t all performed collectively for a very long time; you’re throwing a group out towards Croatia, they performed theirs nearly towards Belgium of their final pleasant. A variety of their massive weapons performed, and why not? That is my solely drawback, you set this group collectively on Sunday, is it going to be rusty, is it going to stream? That is the issue. It will be boiling scorching, and Croatia will maintain the ball in addition to anybody on their day.

It appeared from a distance, it was just like the gamers who have been taking part in, have been pondering ‘I am taking part in on this recreation, so I am not going to be taking part in towards Croatia’.

Ward-Prowse was the bang unfortunate one. He couldn’t go over (Ben) White, since you take a look and suppose how close to is (Harry) Maguire, it is a gamble, and the opposite purpose is (Tyrone) Mings was that unhealthy, you needed to take him! I am not being horrible however he didn’t play properly, he was shaky in each video games. You look and suppose I’ve received to take one other defender, simply in case.

Ward-Prowse was unfortunate, out of everybody he can move a ball, get it transferring, transfer it rapidly, he performs precisely like he does for Southampton when he performs for England, which too many different gamers don’t.

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