Euro 2024: Southgate admits England must improve after draw with Denmark

In their first two Euro 2024 matches, England were lacklustre with 1-1 draw by Denmark and earlier, they just managed to beat Serbia 1-0

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England´s head coach Gareth Southgate acknowledges the public at the end of the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C football match between Denmark and England at the Frankfurt Arena in Frankfurt am Main on June 20, 2024. — AFP  

England Manager Gareth Southgate admitted that the team have yet to hit top form despite the lack of promising results so far in their opening two Euro 2024 matches.

Placed in Group C, England were held to a 1-1 draw by Denmark on Thursday. Earlier, they managed to beat Serbia 1-0.

The 53-year-old England acknowledged England's not so impressive performance.

Harry Kane's first-half strike was cancelled out by Morten Hjulmand's long-range strike, leaving England's attacking acumen under scrutiny.

"Clearly, we're disappointed with the level of the two performances we've had, so we've got to go and analyse that in depth and find some solutions to addressing the issues that we have," Southgate said, addressing a press conference on Friday.

"We know the level can be higher. Maybe the biggest thing is we have to accept the environment that we're in and the expectations that are around us. At the moment, we're falling a little bit short of that."

He emphasised his role in improving the team's performance, saying, "Ultimately, that's my responsibility. I'm the manager, and I've got to guide this group in the best way possible to achieve extraordinary things."

Southgate pointed to the absence of key players as a factor in the team's imbalance, particularly missing left-back Luke Shaw. He praised Kieran Trippier's contributions, stating, "Tripps has done an incredible job for the team. His spirit, his organisation, his desire, have helped us get over the line in the last two games."

Despite the pitch issues in Frankfurt, where Kyle Walker had to change boots early on, Southgate refused to blame external factors for the lacklustre performance. "We can't be making any excuses for the level of the performance," he remarked.

England currently lead Group C with four points and are poised to reach the knockout stage. They face Slovenia next, while Denmark takes on Serbia.