Gareth Southgate prefers ‘legend’ Steve Holland by his side rather than a golden generation celebrity like David Beckham: ‘He is a huge ally for me’
- Fabio Capello used David Beckham as a cheerleader at the 2010 World Cup
- Roy Hodgson then brought Gary Neville onto his coaching staff for 2014
- But Gareth Southgate doesn’t feel the need to add to the backroom team
- He has reserved special praise for his assistant manager Steve Holland
Fabio Capello used Beckham as a cheerleader at the 2010 World Cup and Roy Hodgson then brought another member of the Golden Generation, Gary Neville, onto his coaching staff for 2014.
However, Southgate doesn’t feel the need to add to the backroom team that have taken England to next month’s finals, reserving special praise for his assistant Steve Holland, who has plenty of big-match experience under five different managers including Carlo Ancelotti and Jose Mourinho at Chelsea.
Gareth Southgate has reserved special praise for his England assistant Steve Holland
‘In my view, Steve Holland is a legend. He has won the Champions League, Europa League, Premier League, FA Cup. He is the most experienced English coach in the country with his coaching background from developing young players right through to working with some of the best managers in the world.’
It’s not in Southgate’s nature to prioritise a celebrity culture above tried and trusted personnel and he has an advantage in having played 50 times for England himself.
In 48-year-old Holland, he has the trusted right-hand man he feels every successful England manager needs and is reluctant to disrupt the dynamic.
‘He is a huge ally for me, a great sounding board, great confidante and friend,’ said Southgate. ‘He will challenge my thinking and speak his mind. He’s been in the biggest matches possible, we have complete trust in each other and that is a critical relationship.
Fabio Capello used David Beckham as a cheerleader at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa
‘I think Terry (Venables) had that with Don (Howe), who had also operated at the highest level and would challenge Terry and Terry would take that on board.
‘Number two is the wrong phrase, we work together on everything. We share our ideas on players, and phone each other on the way home from games to compare, update and thrash around tactical suggestions.
‘I trust his judgement and that trust is critical. He is an outstanding person to work with.’
Capello’s decision to draft in Beckham for South Africa was criticised as a “vanity project” and backfired as England were thumped 4-1 by Germany in the last-16.
Hodgson fast-tracked Neville onto his backroom team in time for Euro 2012 and stayed on for the disastrous campaigns at the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016.
Author: Nancy Parker
Nancy Parker is a five time Emmy Award winning journalist and seven time Emmy nominee who has spent almost twenty five years covering news in South Louisiana. She has anchored every prime time newscast at WVUE FOX8 during her twenty year tenure in New Orleans.