Gareth Southgate says he has a plan to fix England penalty woes

Gareth Southgate has shown on several occasions during his reign as England boss that he isn’t afraid to try something new.

He has rotated the captaincy around following the retirement of Wayne Rooney, with Joe Hart, Gary Cahill, Jordan Henderson, Harry Kane, and most recently Eric Dier all wearing the armband for their country.

The former Middlesbrough manager has also experimented with his formations, from playing with a modern 3-4-2-1 formation, to a more original 4-3-3 style.

Southgate has called up several previously uncapped players to his squad too, with Jake Livermore a regular despite public opinion, and Tammy Abraham, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Joe Gomez all made their debut against Germany last Friday.

Youngsters Lewis Cook and Dominic Solanke could be the next to profit from the former central defender’s youth policy too, having been called up to the squad to face Brazil, alongside Angus Gunn.

And now, Southgate has revealed his idea to address England’s penalty shoot-out woes in major tournaments, having lost six of the seven they’ve contested over the years.

That started with the loss to West Germany in the semi-finals of the 1990 World Cup, and Southgate himself missed the crucial spot kick against the Germans at Euro ’96 at the same stage.

The Three Lions have lost to Argentina, Portugal twice and Italy since then, and Southgate believes that practice could make perfect if England find themselves in another shoot-out in Russia next summer.

The 47-year-old has said his side could stage practice penalty shoot-outs at the end of matches to help better prepare the players for something their predecessors have so often failed in.

“It’s something that we are considering and how we prepare best for penalty shoot-outs,” he stated.

“Whether that’s something on the training ground, whether that’s in sessions we do away from the training ground or something we do in some sort of match scenario, we’ve not finalised things like that yet. But clearly that is an option.”

England’s penalty hoodoo has spread to the under 21’s and women’s teams too, with the latter losing all three of their shoot-outs, while the former have just one win in three.

The senior squad actually have the worst record in the world, and with all three combined England have been beaten 12 times on penalties out of a possible 14.

Clearly, it is something that Southgate must find a solution to in case the Three Lions are unfortunate enough to find themselves in that situation in Russia next year.

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