England boss Gareth Southgate explains March plans and his own World Cup excitement

With just one month to go until his team face Italy at Wembley, England manager Gareth Southgate reveals what he is hoping to achieve from March’s meet-up.

Tuesday 27 Feb 2018
Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate has spoken of his excitement at leading England into the 2018 World Cup

We go into the March internationals looking for two key things really, which is producing the best possible performances and also to work at things which we want to take into our game for the World Cup in the summer.

Of course, we have a need to look at certain players when we meet up, to try and re-connect them with how we want to play, because it will have been four months since we last worked with them in November.

England v Italy
  • International Match
  • 8pm, Tuesday 27 March 2018
  • Wembley Stadium connected by EE

We now know who we’re playing in the World Cup and we know the set-up of the games, so we’ll be looking to establish some ways of working which we can carry through to the summer for us.

There’s still more mid to long-term objectives than the short term for those two matches, but everybody is getting more and more excited about the World Cup now and I’m really looking forward to the challenge.

Going to a World Cup takes me back to when I was younger, coming back home from school and being desperate to watch the games and seeing what it means to everybody in the country.

And how many people get the chance to lead their country into a World Cup?

I had the privilege to do it as a player as well so to do it as a manager feels even more special and I’m hugely excited by the challenge and the group of players we’ve got, and how much we think they can improve and get better over the next few years.

Tickets for the game with Italy at Wembley on Tuesday 27 March are available from £20 for adults and £10 for kids.

By Gareth Southgate England manager