FIFA World Cup draw: Shearer believes experience will pay for Southgate

Former England captain Alan Shearer is confident England can profit from Gareth Southgate’s experience of tournament football at the highest level.

England have been drawn in Group F alongside Belgium, Tunisia and Panama in what has widely been seen as a favourable group for the 1966 World Cup winners.

Shearer, who played with Southgate at France 98, was keen to emphasise the benefits that tournament experience will bring for the manager, who also appeared at the 2002 World Cup.

Shearer said: “It’s a big advantage for Gareth Southgate that he’s been at a tournament as a player. He knows what makes a player tick at a tournament and what they need.
“He’ll be confident about this group, the homework starts now.
“The expectation is no longer there now from the past couple of tournaments.
“I don’t expect us to go to Russia and win but I expect us to improve on the last tournament when we lost to Iceland. That’s what the country are looking for, it shouldn’t be difficult.”
Should England progress, they will meet one of Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan from Group H in the second round, with Iceland as potential quarter-final opponents.

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