2022 World Cup Preview: Gareth Southgate’s England Hope To Pull Their Form Back

Gareth Southgate will need a turnaround in England's form if he wants success this World Cup

Gareth Southgate’s England dive headfirst into this World Cup without a competitive win since hammering San Marino in 2021. Find out what Last Word on Football thinks the Three Lions’ prospects are going into the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Gareth Southgate’s England Hope To Pull Their Form Back

Harry Kane to Be Crucial Man for Three Lions

One player that Gareth Southgate will need to have firing going into this World Cup is Harry Kane. No matter where his form is, both domestically and internationally, the striker is a world-class player and can make a difference.

The prolific Spurs striker is just two goals behind Wayne Rooney’s scoring record now and if the Three Lions are to perform anywhere near the levels they were at in the Euros, he’ll need to break that record in Qatar. 

Southgate Will Be Put Under Tactical Scrutiny

England’s tactics have come under close inspection in recent years as the international side has seemingly made some suspect decisions in the past few years.

Southgate prefers a 3-4-3 set-up, but it is often seen as too safe by some, making use of a back three which potentially limits the attacking outlets available. However, this could be ideal for tournament football, limiting mistakes and keeping the team in tight games. 

On the subject of limiting mistakes, the manager’s team selection will be under a lot of scrutiny. Harry Maguire is a near-permanent fixture in the England squad in spite of mistake after mistake at club level. 

Arsenal Man Has Point to Prove

Bukayo Saka was one of a trio of Three Lions who felt heartbreak personally in the last international tournament.

He’s had an incredible start to the 2022/23 season with Arsenal, working closely with Brazilian talents Gabriel Jesus and Gabriel Martinelli.

With six goal contributions in 20 matches for the Three Lions in his career so far, Bukayo Saka is thriving in a creative environment at The Emirates that could bring out that killer edge that England need to thrive. 

Turn-around in Form Crucial for England Success

After a few international tournaments of dreams almost coming true, this feels like it could be back to the standard of upsetting international competition for England. Baddiel and Skinner will blare out across the streets and squares of the nation, but with Iran, the USA and Wales all providing clear challenges, and second in the group potentially throwing the Three Lions to the Netherlands, this could be a tough month. 

The knockout stages feel likely, but it will take a real turnaround in form to see England try to repeat the 2018 World Cup or Euro 2020.

 

Last Word on Football recognise the human rights abuses and instances of corruption taking place throughout Qatar and in the background of the World Cup. Learn more about some of the issues surrounding the World Cup here.