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England Manager Gareth Southgate Says Euro 2024 Could Be His Final Tournament with the Three Lions

ERFURT, Germany (AP) — Gareth Southgate accepts the European Championship could be his final act as England manager.

Southgate’s contract expires after the Euros, which kick off Friday when Germany plays Scotland.

He believes it could be his final tournament unless he ends the nation’s search for a first major trophy since the World Cup in 1966.

“If we don’t win, I probably won’t be here anymore,” Southgate told German newspaper Bild. “Then it might be the last chance.

“I think about half of the national coaches leave after a tournament — that’s the nature of international football.”

Under Southgate England advanced to the semifinals of the World Cup in 2018 — when it lost to Croatia — and was a finalist in 2021 at the last Euros when it lost to Italy in a penalty shootout.

England was eliminated from the World Cup in 2022 at the quarterfinal stage by France.

“I’ve been here for almost eight years now and we’ve come close. So, I know that you can’t keep standing in front of the public and saying ‘please do a little more’, because at some point people will lose faith in your message,” Southgate said. “If we want to be a big team and I want to be a top coach, then you have to deliver in the big moments.”

Southgate has been mentioned as a potential candidate for the Manchester United job if Erik ten Hag is fired during the offseason. But Southgate has so far distanced himself from the debate about his future.

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