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Euro 2024: Gareth Southgate hails England’s ‘greatest efficiency’ of event after beating Switzerland to succeed in semi-finals | Soccer Information

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Gareth Southgate hailed England’s character after what he described as their greatest efficiency of Euro 2024 within the quarter-final penalty shootout win in opposition to Switzerland.

Bukayo Saka cancelled out Breel Embolo’s opener to take the sport to extra-time and onto penalties the place Cole Palmer, Jude Bellingham, Saka, Ivan Toney and Trent Alexander-Arnold all scored and Jordan Pickford saved Manuel Akanji’s opening effort for the Swiss as England reached the semi-finals.

It was a dramatic finish to an edgy encounter and England’s first shoot-out win since beating the Swiss within the Nations League third-placed play-off 5 years in the past in Portugal.

“I simply thought the gamers have been sensible. It is one of the best we have now performed,” Southgate informed the BBC after the win.

Picture:
Jordan Pickford saves Manuel Akanji’s penalty

“I believed we brought about them a number of issues. They’re a extremely good aspect. They’re exhausting to press, they’re exhausting to defend in opposition to, their motion is nice.

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“To come back from behind once more and present the character and resilience we did, speaking to the gamers about that, profitable tournaments is not nearly enjoying properly. It is not nearly that. You have to present different attributes to win and we confirmed all of them tonight.

England players celebrate after defeating Switzerland on penalties to advance to the semi-finals of Euro 2024
Picture:
England gamers have fun after defeating Switzerland on penalties to advance to the semi-finals of Euro 2024

“We performed properly immediately and we needed to be tactically spot on. I do not know what folks consider us however we’re in a 3rd semi-final, so that claims loads in regards to the group.

“We knew we wanted to get strain on their again three and that is not straightforward with out altering the form. I believed the gamers have been disciplined with it.

“I believed Phil was an actual drawback for them to select up, Kobbie and Jude have been discovering these gaps on the aspect of their block. I believed we had good management. For a number of the balls into the field, we in all probability wanted extra males within the field, however l thought it was one of the best that we have now performed.”

Southgate: No doubting Saka would take a pen

Bukayo Saka celebrates after equalising for England against Switzerland

Saka missed the decisive penalty within the ultimate of the final Euros in opposition to Italy at Wembley Stadium in 2021 as England fell simply brief on this competitors final time round.

On Saka stepping as much as take a penalty within the shootout and scoring this time, Southgate stated: “So courageous. He’s one in every of our greatest, so we have been by no means in any query that he was going to take one. However everyone knows what he went by.

Bukayo Saka celebrates after scoring England's equaliser against Switzerland
Picture:
Bukayo Saka after scoring England’s equaliser in opposition to Switzerland

“To ship as he did…. However not simply him, Trent and Ivan, to come back on and take them as they did; Cole, he is like an {old} man in the best way he’s fearless. So an enormous outcome for us, an enormous efficiency, and we’re nonetheless in it.

“We performed properly immediately and we needed to be tactically spot on. I do not know what folks consider us however we’re in a 3rd semi-final, so that claims loads in regards to the group.”

Evaluation: Saka exhibits his mettle and high quality

Bukayo Saka scores England's equaliser against Switzerland
Picture:
Bukayo Saka scores England’s equaliser in opposition to Switzerland

England wouldn’t be celebrating a spot within the final 4 with out Bukayo Saka. The Arsenal ahead, England’s most harmful participant all through the competition, scored a shocking equaliser throughout a player-of-the-match efficiency in Dusseldorf.

Much more spectacular, although, was his willingness to then step up and take one in every of England’s penalties within the shootout, solely three years after the miss that proved so expensive within the ultimate of Euro 2020. Not solely that, he transformed it too, demonstrating his high quality and mettle to assist England recover from the road.



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