Southgate talks up Wembley incentive for England after landing favourable Euro 2020 draw
Posted On March 22, 2019
The Three Lions will be hoping to not only qualify for the next European Championship, but also make it to the finals stage being held on home soil
Gareth Southgate admits the opportunity to take in semi-final and final dates at Wembley should act as a “big incentive” for England in their Euro 2020 campaign.
The Three Lions discovered on Sunday that they have been placed in qualification Group A.
A favourable draw has them in that pot alongside the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Kosovo.
Having already made the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and the last four of the inaugural UEFA Nations League, big things are expected of England.
Southgate is aware of that and hopes the opportunity to reach the latter stages of the next European Championship on home soil acts as added motivation for his players.
He told Sky Sports: “It is a one-off, so it is going to be complicated in terms of the logistics, but the brilliant thing is the incentive for us is so big, because we get those games at Wembley.
“That is a rare opportunity for any player, to play in a major championship at home, so the potential for an exciting 18 months is ahead of us.”
England, who are already guaranteed at least a play-off berth as a result of their successful Nations League campaign, will be expected to make light of their qualification rivals.
Southgate is, however, taking nothing for granted, saying: “We have avoided some big teams, so we have to make sure our preparation for these sort of games is spot on.
“When you play some of the lesser-known countries, motivation for them to play against England is massive.
“Especially the games away from home, there can be very intense atmospheres, but we are in a good moment as a team and we want to keep that momentum going.”
He added on the danger of complacency creeping into a young squad: “It is not something we have seen from this group of players in the time I have worked with them.
“We have a chance to host matches at Wembley, so the motivation is high and that should make sure complacency is not part of the equation.”