England defender Harry Maguire believes the Three Lions changed their style of football at this summers World Cup in Russia.
English football has long been mocked by it’s European and South American counterparts as being the home of ‘long ball’ or ‘kick and rush’ tactics.
This time round however, Gareth Southgate’s side did play some excellent football in Russia, with the likes of Maguire and John Stones clearly having been encouraged to play out from the back.
There are of course some critics who will say this brand of football is easy to play against poor or average sides like Tunisia, Panama and Sweden, and that the old habit of playing long soon returned as soon as Croatia began to dominate the ball during the semi-final loss.
However, Maguire is adamant that his side have improved their style of football and he credits that to Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.
“We’d like to think we changed the philosophy of our game,” Maguire said in the post match press conference after his sides 2-0 third place playoff to Belgium.
“Gareth (Southgate) has had a great plan since he came in. He feels that is the best thing for us to be successful.
“We’ve tried to play out and change the game to the way we want to play but there is still a lot of improvement to come. We feel we can get a lot better as a team and as a group. It is now time to show that.
“It’s really good playing under a manager like Gareth. The confidence he has instilled in the team, his man-management skills are really, really top.
“He gives us confidence and belief that we can go and play and perform to the best of our ability. All credit to him for the way we are playing and the passing, stepping into midfield, it is all down to the management and staff.”