Gareth Southgate is preparing to lead England into their third major tournament since he became manager. Despite controversy over his appointment, the 52-year-old has enjoyed great success at the helm.
Southgate was unexpectedly appointed interim coach in 2016 following a scandal surrounding Sam Allardyce that forced him to resign after only one match. After picking up two wins and two draws, Southgate’s role became permanent and he penned a four-year contract almost six years ago. His first great success with the Three Lions came in the 2018 World Cup, where they came second in their group before knocking out Colombia and Sweden to reach the semi-finals. The team were beaten by Croatia in the next round but fans were left elated after so many years of disappointment.
England managed to do even better in last summer’s Euro tournament when they beat the likes of Germany and Denmark to reach their first final of a major tournament since the 1966 World Cup. The Three Lions were narrowly beaten by Italy on penalties in the Euro final but the country was once again united in delight for the squad.
The success of Southgate’s tenure so far has been a lot more than many had ever expected, while many will have known very little about his managerial career before he joined the senior team. Here is everything you need to know ahead of his third tournament in charge...
Has Gareth Southgate ever managed a club?
Gareth Southgate has only ever managed one club side and that was Middlesbrough, where he began his managerial career. After spending five years with Boro as a player, Southgate was named as Steve McClaren’s replacement in the hot seat only months after he hung up his boots. The Watford-born manager didn’t have any of the required coaching qualifications to manage a top-flight club and so was only appointed for twelve weeks initially, before he was given special dispensation from the Premier League board five months later.
Southgate led Middlesbrough to 12th and 13th place finishes in the Premier League in his first two seasons before they suffered relegation to the Championship in the 2008-09 campaign. The former defender was sacked in October 2009, despite the club only one point off the top of the second tier. Following his departure, Boro went onto finish eleventh in the Championship and didn’t win promotion until 2016.
The England boss was responsible for signings such as Robert Huth, Julio Arca and Jonathan Woodgate, while the likes of Mark Viduka, Lee Cattermole and George Boateng left the club. He also became the first Middlesbrough manager to win the Premier League Manager of the Month award since Terry Venables in 2001.
Where was Gareth Southgate before he took the England job?
After four years out of football, Southgate replaced Stuart Pearce as the manager of the England under-21 side in 2013. He then led the youngsters to qualify for the 2015 Euros though went onto finish bottom of their group and were knocked out of the competition. With a squad that included Jordan Pickford, James Ward-Prowse, Jack Grealish and Ben Chilwell, the Young Lions boss guided them to victory in the 2016 Toulon Tournament, four months before his promotion to the senior squad.