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Sven Goran Eriksson interview: England v Wales, World Cup, Marcus Rashford

01 Dec | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
Sven Goran Eriksson interview: England v Wales, World Cup, Marcus Rashford

The former England manager discusses their performances at the 2022 World Cup and reflects on his time in charge.

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What were your thoughts on England’s display against Wales? 

The first half was not that great. It was slow but England still controlled the game, though they only created one chance.

England scored twice in the one minute and then everything changed. It looked like Wales disappeared and, of course, England scored one more and were totally in control.

Would you have liked to coach Marcus Rashford when you were England boss?

I’d have loved to coach Rashford. He’s a fantastic football player. To have a runner like that with his speed in the team, he’ll always create danger for the opponents.

We had some top players in my time but he’s one player I’d have loved to have in my squad.

Have Foden and Rashford earned a starting spot for the next game?

I think Foden and Rashford have both earned the right to start the next game. But Gareth Southgate is so lucky as he has Harry Kane. 

He hasn’t scored yet but he will, and it won’t make a difference who is by his side as there’s so many good players there.

What’s the difference between this England side and yours?

The England team I had would compete with the England team today, but the England squad today is stronger than mine. We didn’t have as many options as Southgate has today. Southgate will be criticised for whoever he leaves on the bench. 

It’s a great problem to have, though, as everyone wants to have that many options from the bench.

Does Gareth Southgate deserve a new contract?

Southgate has done a superb job as England boss. England are in the last-16 and have Senegal next. I’m sure they’ll progress and then they’re in the quarter-finals.

I would give Southgate another contract, why not? There’s talk of Mauricio Pochettino and Thomas Tuchel but Southgate should go on.

I don’t think people should be talking about the future of Southgate as England could reach the final again.

Are you happy Harry Maguire is back to his best?

Harry Maguire has been criticised for a long time now. He hasn’t been playing well for Manchester United but he’s now back to his best, like he was at Leicester.

It’s true that he wasn’t playing well. I’m not sure if his confidence was low, but in football today you’re criticised if you don’t play well.

It’s so good to see him back and showing his quality.

Where can you see Jude Bellingham ending up?

If he goes to City he’s bound to be a success.

But I can also see him at Real Madrid. It will be interesting to see at the end of the season if he stays in Germany. Dortmund is a huge club but Man City and Real Madrid are even bigger.

Who are your picks for the tournament at this stage?

I think England and Brazil have been the two best sides at the World Cup. They’ve showed great quality every time they’ve played.

France and Mbappe have also been good but something tells me it will be between England and Brazil this time.

Who was the most talented player you coached?

I think Paul Scholes was the most talented player I ever coached – he had everything. More than Lampard, Gerrard and Beckham.

You can pick so many immense players from my time. Rooney, Beckham, Rio, Terry, and Owen when he was at his peak.

But Scholes was a playmaker, finisher – he wasn’t the best in the world at defending, but he could do it. He was a brilliant football player.

Do you like what you see of Cody Gakpo?

Gakpo would be very good for the Premier League and I’m certain he wouldn’t need that much time to adapt.

The thing is that many clubs will have been watching him thirty or forty times. Looking at Manchester United, Ronaldo has gone now and they need a No. 9.

Harry Kane seems the perfect fit. He could be impossible to get, but they have to get something similar.

Who would you sign for Man City if you had to choose one player?

They have so many players but imagine Kylian Mbappe with Erling Haaland up top.

He’s a fantastic football player and no one would beat them up front.