Michael Owen thinks Gareth Southgate made one big mistake on Wednesday, with Aston Villa ace Jack Grealish
England needed extra-time to surpass Denmark and book their place in the final of Euro 2020, their first final since the World Cup in 1966. But Michael Owen believes Gareth Southgate made one big mistake. Owen says it was wrong to take Villa star Jack Grealish off, having already brought him on.
Grealish, 25, started the match on the bench but came on after 69 minutes, replacing Arsenal star Bukayo Saka. He immediately impressed, with the scoreline reading 1-1 after Saka had forced Simon Kjaer into an own goal. It followed a beautiful opener from talented Danish star Mikkel Damsgaard.
Harry Kane then put England in front on 104 minutes. Having seen his penalty saved by Leicester’s Kasper Schmeichel, he tapped home the rebound. Grealish was replaced two minutes later by Kieran Trippier. While he was all smiles after full-time, Owen was not as impressed.
England at Euro 2020: Should Southgate have left Villa man Grealish on, amid Owen claim?
The problem is that Grealish was brought on to do one thing, and one thing only – help England score a winner. He was crucial in doing so against Germany, being involved in both goals. Grealish came off the bench and helped England get that winner – though it was a controversial decision.
So, did he deserve to stay on? With it being a semi-final in extra-time, Southgate needed players that were going to work hard and provide a defensive base. He has reservations with Grealish’s work rate and that is why keeping Phil Foden and Sterling on made sense.
While Owen has a good point, Southgate was right to take Villa skipper Grealish off, as England progress to the Euro 2020 final.
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