Capello hails Southgate for choice of centre-backs and goalkeeper

Former England boss Fabio Capello has been singing the praises of current Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate.

The Italian, who has also managed AC Milan and Real Madrid in an illustrious career, has been impressed by Southgate’s decision to revert to a three centre-back system, while he also believes England’s pace in attacking areas is a real asset.

Capello struggled to find a goalkeeper he trusted during his England reign, famously dropping former West Ham ‘keeper Rob Green after he made a massive error in the opening game of the 2010 World Cup, and he has hailed the performances of the current number one Jordan Pickford.

“They have fast lads and a great manager,” Capello told Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Southgate understood that he’d go home with two central defenders, so he put three. He’s finally found a goalkeeper who saves: [Jordan] Pickford has reactions and positional sense.

“He [Southgate] is helped by a context like the Premier League in which clubs launch youngsters without being conditioned.

“The talent was there, but his intuition was [Harry] Maguire in a three-man defence, the choice of Pickford and managing tension.

“The final? France-England. And in that case, I see England as favourites.”

England face Croatia tonight in just the third semi-final in their history, and a victory for Southgate’s men will see them book a date in the World Cup final against France next Sunday in Moscow.

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