Ferdinand criticizes England's mentality & selections
General

Ferdinand criticizes England's mentality & selections

Rio Ferdinand has criticised England manager Gareth Southgate for treating his side like a small team at Euro 2020 so far.

Southgate's surprising decision to overlook Jadon Sancho so far, with the Borussia Dortmund winger scarcely getting a look-in, was also a source of criticism for the former Three Lions defender.

Southgate's team got off to a good start with a 1-0 win over Croatia in their first match, but they were clearly uninspiring in their following match, a 0-0 draw with Scotland.

Ferdinand has made it clear that he wants to see more from this England team, with Sancho appearing like a guy who has the potential to make a big impression, while fans will be disappointed by Jack Grealish's lack of game time thus far.

Ferdinand said on his YouTube channel about England's current strategy: “There are inexperienced players that haven’t been to tournaments, they’re everywhere.

“You go on what they’ve done at their club and the last three years, in terms of output, has been the second-best player in terms of goal involvement over the last three years – and he’s done it at Dortmund.

“So to think that you’re talking about experience… he’s played more games than [Phil] Foden at the top level as well as [Mason] Mount and [Jude] Bellingham.’

“I just feel that sometimes as a manager you’ve got to be brave.

“You’ve got to be brave and don’t err on the side of caution. In Southgate’s mind he’s going to have to be brave because I think naturally he’s a more conservative person.

“In his own mind he’ll think he’s being brave when we’re sitting here going: ‘Just play him!’

“We’ve seen him play at the top level but if you’re sitting there as Gareth Southgate, you’ve got to go against your natural instinct.

“Do you know what it goes back to? It goes back to big team mentality.

“He’s coaching and setting us up like a small team mentality.

“A big team mentality manager would have gone into that game and said, ‘We’re going grab this bull by the horns, control the pace of the game, camp on the edge of their box and force them back into their half’, but we didn’t do that.”