England success and club manager sackings

29th Mar 2023

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The domestic break was a huge success for England who won both of their Euro 2024 qualifiers with more records broken along the way. First and most impressively England beat Italy in a repeat of the Euro 2020 final and they did so in Italy for the first time since 1961 and the nations had met 11 times between that period. England won 2-1 but raced into a 2-0 lead and even though the Italians pushed them at the end Gareth Southgate's side were able to hang on. The game also marked yet another record for Harry Kane as he scored his 54th goal for England to become the nations all time top goalscorer finally overtaking Wayne Rooney. The record should have gone against France in last years World Cup when Kane infamously missed a penalty and so to get the record by converting a penalty would also have given him a huge shot of confidence playing for the national side. With fitness levels getting ever better one could presume that Kane has 4-5 years left in international football and he may reach 70 goals plus by the time he hangs up his boots, that would feel like a phenomenal and solid record for any aspiring future England centre forward to beat.

England followed that result up by beating Ukraine 2-0 in sadly what felt like a friendly for the Ukrainians who have obviosuly had to endure a terrible 12 months in their personal lives. But on football matters this wasn't competitive and England strolled to an easy win, there should have been more goals but after two games Southgate's side have 6 points and are heading to Euro 2024 in Germany. Perhaps one critic of Southgate would be why he doesn't bring on substitutions earlier in the game and wait so long? It has been a trait of his tenure and it almost bit him against the Italians. From 83 games only 14 have been lost for England under Southgate and they will head to the Euro's as one of the favourites to win it.

To win Euro 2024: France 6.00, England 7.00, Germany 7.00, Spain 8.00 Portugal 12.00


At 38 and 35 years respectively Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are supposed to be slowing down but the two greatest players of the past 15 years are still scoring goals and influencing games. Ronaldo added 4 more goals to his already international goalscoring record and now has 122 as Portugal swept past Liechtenstein and Luxembourg. Messi who needed just two goals to reach 100 international goals also scored 4 goals including a hat trick and a superb free kick (albeit against a country i've never even heard of, Curacao) and he now has 102 goals, could he catch Ronaldo's record, with the quality Argentina have you wouldn't bet against it.

Antonio Conte leaving Tottenham wasn't a surprise but some of the Tottenham fans defending him was. There is no doubt that Conte is a world class manager having won 5 league titles in the last decade but one could argue that for the past 12 months he has acted unprofessional for a top level manager and seemed to want away from the club. Granted his rant told home truths in his last press conference meltdown after Tottenham had blown a two goal lead against the bottom club Southampton to draw 3-3. But it was a rant you tell your players behind closed doors or close friends not the worlds media. Even before then when Tottenham were dropping points unexpectedly he would hint if he could stay on, maybe you have to admire the guys honesty but how can that be beneficial to the players? Conte leaves with two months left on his contract and a possible £2.5m pay out, and that just seems unfair. He also leaves with no trophies and a permanent image of angry manager screaming at everyone and everything from the sidelines.

What did come as a surprise was Bayern Munich sacking Julian Nagelsmann. Bayern have just knocked out PSG in the Champions League are in the quarter finals, they are aslo in 2nd place in the Bundesliga but only a point behind Borussia Dortmund, titles are at the ready. However Nagelsmann lost the dressing room and fell out with the best and long serving players such as goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. That is a no-no for a club like Bayern who like to keep close ties with players and former players. So despite some good performances this season he was let go. Thomas Tuchel has immediately taken over and on the face of it this could be a good fit. The former Chelsea manager has a huge game on his hands in a couple of weeks time as Bayern will take on Manchester City in the Champions League. As for Nagelsmann this brings us back to Tottenham who of course are looking for a top drawer manager, however as good as Nagelsmann is if he rubs up players the wrong way won't that simply put Tottenham back to square one? Let's be honest the sacking of Mauricio Pochettino has been a big mistake and while the Argentinian failed to deliver trophies he did look like he was making huge progress with the club, should owner Daniel Levy bite the bullet and bring Poch back?

Next Tottenham manager: Julen Nagelsmann 2.10, Mauricio Pochettino 5.00, Roberto De Zerbi 8.00, Arne Slot 9.00, Cristian Stellini 11.00

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