England manager Gareth Southgate has signed a new contract to lead the national side until 2024.
Southgate’s previous deal was due to expire at the end of the World Cup finals in Qatar in December of next year, but the England boss and his assistant Steve Holland have now signed new contracts through to December 2024.
The announcement ends the speculation surrounding Southgate’s immediate future and means he will lead England at Euro 2024 should they qualify for the tournament in Germany.
“I am delighted that Steve and I have been able to extend our stay in our respective roles,” said Southgate, in a statement released by the FA.
“It remains an incredible privilege to lead this team. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mark (Bullingham, chief executive), John (McDermott, technical director) and the board for their support – and of course the players and support team for their hard work.
“We have a great opportunity in front of us and I know they and the fans are all excited about what this squad could achieve in future.”
Southgate took over as England manager in 2016 following Sam Allardyce’s dismissal and has since overseen a period of relative success for the national side.
He led England to a World Cup semi-final in 2018 in his first major tournament as manager, before securing a third-place finish in the inaugural UEFA Nations League the following summer.
Southgate then guided England to the Euro 2020 final on home soil, where they were beaten on penalties by Italy at Wembley.
His most recent success was guiding England to the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar after an unbeaten qualifying campaign which featured eight wins and two draws.
Southgate signs up for England’s exciting future
Sky Sports’ Peter Smith:
There had been a feeling that the lure of club football may tempt Gareth Southgate after next year’s World Cup but his contract extension is a real statement of his belief in England’s exciting future.
When he took the country to the World Cup in Russia in 2018, the team went there with hardly any expectations, given the disastrous European Championship tournament two years earlier under Roy Hodgson.
But that unlikely run to the semi-finals brought belief, and a Nations League semi-final followed by this summer’s Euros has transformed expectations. England will go to Qatar 2022 as serious contenders.
That is credit to Southgate’s coaching skill, from his flexible tactical approach during tournaments to his much-praised man management of a squad which appears to have bonds as strong as a club side.
But it is also a demonstration of the growing talent pool at Southgate’s disposal. England’s upward trajectory has been fuelled by young, emerging talent.
They had the youngest squad at this summer’s tournament – but they are also young players who have been trusted and who have built up significant experience. England’s XI against Albania earlier this month had more caps between them than any Three Lions side since 2013.
Seventeen of the 26 at the Euros were 25 or under and, guided by the slightly older Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling, they will arrive in Qatar well set to seize the moment.
But stretching beyond next November and into that Euro 2024 campaign that Southgate has committed himself to, there is a clear succession of quality. Jude Bellingham leads the way, but recent debutants Emile Smith Rowe and Conor Gallagher are the future too, along with Curtis Jones, Mason Greenwood and more.
A Premier League role is undeniably attractive – but for Southgate, the opportunity to create history with England’s exciting generation could not be refused.