Southgate coy on England future; hails lively Lingard on debut

Date published: Saturday 8th October 2016 7:43

Gareth Southgate: Off to winning start

Gareth Southgate: Off to winning start

Interim England boss Gareth Southgate would not be drawn on his future, but was impressed with Jesse Lingard’s performance on debut.

Lingard got the nod ahead of Marcus Rashford in England’s routine 2-0 win against Malta and Southgate thought that the Manchester United wide man dealt with the occasion well.

“I think Lingard had an outstanding debut, linked the play and looked a real threat,” said Southgate.

“He is an exciting player and the stage was made for him. He’s enjoyed Wembley, scored twice here in past for Manchester United, and I thought he had a very good game.”

Southgate also echoed the thoughts of Jordan Henderson by stating that England should have recorded a more commanding scoreline in their latest World Cup qualifying match.

“I thought first half we played well, we could and should have scored more goals,” conceded Southgate.

“Their goalkeeper made some good saves and subconsciously I think some of our players looked after themselves physically in the second half.”

“We missed a couple of good chances but given where we were 10 days ago I am pleased with the result.”

Southgate was also asked to comment on his England reign, but simply said he had taken great pleasure in preparing the team after being asked to step in following Sam Allardyce’s sudden departure.

He added: “I have enjoyed the whole week. I would have liked to give the crowd four or five goals but in their last qualifying group Malta only lost by one goal against Croatia and Italy in both matches.

“There goalkeeper played well and they defended in heavy numbers but we could have won it by more.”

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