England's worst ever players: Michael Ricketts, Scott Carson, Jon Flanagan and more

13 September, 2018, 13:13 | Author: Ellis Copeland
  • England's worst ever players: Michael Ricketts, Scott Carson, Jon Flanagan and more

And Southgate says there were no issues playing the Tottenham star.

Petkovic awarded debuts to three young players in Switzerland's crushing 6-0 win over Iceland in their Nations League opener - right-back Kevin Mbabu, midfielder Djibril Sow and forward Albian Ajeti - and although the team that lined up against England was more experienced, with 30-somethings Stephan Lichtsteiner and Johan Djourou coming into the starting XI, there was novelty in the Swiss tactical setup.

"He [Rashford] has still played a lot of football, although maybe not the continuous starts and I'm really pleased for him that he leaves England full of confidence".

Daily Telegraph columnist Jamie Carragher made the point that Rashford has the most hard of tasks at United - a young player coming through as a striker at a big club. They have a hard job to do and they have big squads in the top six. I think they might, at the beginning, let Tottenham come at them a little bit, give them a bit of respect, which is right because Tottenham's home record was great a year ago.

"He's got huge competition for places at his club, so you can understand that".

When asked to stack up England's most talented players against the likes of Spain's Andres Iniesta, Xavi and David Silva, Southgate said: "The only one in my lifetime is Paul Gascoigne and I'm not sure he was developed, I think he was a outcome of a unique talent. José [Mourinho] thinks the world of Marcus - he's a huge admirer of him - but he has his job to do".

There have been claims Rashford's career has stalled at United since Mourinho took charge in 2016.

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But he has sturuggled for game time since the arrival of Romelu Lukaku for £90m past year.

Southgate, though, did at least stave off an unwanted record of becoming the first England boss to oversee four straight defeats and further puncture the feel-good factor of a run to the World Cup semi-finals.

'I don't think he should have been here for the two weeks.

"He is happy to play wherever he can get game time and he is still getting stronger".

Southgate believes there is much more to come from him, but his prospects are not helped by the bit-part role he continued to play at United.

"There have been games where he is coming too deep, partly because when he is having to ping defenders he is still getting stronger". "In the end, we are over the moon to keep a clean sheet and get back to winning ways".

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