Gareth Southgate says England will still play out from the back despite costly errors
"I think we need to play out better. The last [goal] is an element of fatigue... When you're fatigued, errors happen so I don't think it's a case of stopping what we're doing."
Last Updated: 07/06/19 11:47am
Gareth Southgate says England will still play out from the back despite two costly errors in the Nations League semi-final defeat to the Netherlands.
After some VAR intervention, the game was drawn 1-1 after 90 minutes but some sloppy passes from John Stones and Ross Barkley allowed the Netherlands to score twice in extra-time and win the semi-final 3-1.
The mistakes raised some questions about England playing out from the back, although Southgate was adamant that it would not persuade him to abandon the style.
"I think we need to play out better. The last [goal] is an element of fatigue. Ross had gone down with cramp just before and when you're fatigued, errors happen so I don't think it's a case of stopping what we're doing," Southgate told Sky Sports.
"They are passes our players can play with absolutely no problem but it wasn't just the two goals, we made errors and gave opportunities away that should have been punished before that. The Dutch pressed very well with real intensity and we weren't quite as sharp with some of our decision-making.
"I think we've learned so much in terms of playing against a top quality team that posed us different problems than we've faced in the past. We got to grips with those issues, we had a threat throughout the game and the obvious thing is that we've conceded really poor goals.
"At any level, you can't concede the types of goals we conceded, but we also had a couple of really good opportunities to score.
"I think it is an important game for us as a group to reflect on. The next few days are going to be painful because you get to this point and to lose is a big disappointment for everybody, we had so many supporters here as well, but we'll dig in and we'll be stronger from the experience definitely."
England will now go on to face Switzerland in the third and fourth place play-off game (kick-off at 2pm), live on Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Main Event, before the final between Portugal and the Netherlands at 7.45pm, also live on Sky Sports.
"As the manager, you have to lead them through these periods and make sure we dust ourselves down and come back and give a good account of ourselves on Sunday," added Southgate.
'Stones not to blame for defeat'
John Stones was involved in all three of the Netherlands goals, but his team-mate Harry Maguire refused to blame the defeat on his central-defensive partner.
"We didn't perform to our level, there were mistakes throughout the team - there's always going to be mistakes playing out from the back, but too many for my liking," Maguire told Sky Sports News.
"I made a couple, didn't get punished. Their lad made a mistake and got punished and then John Stones made one and it got punished.
"It was not the best performance on our behalf, but we have to learn from them and take the [lessons] into the major tournaments."
'We'll continue with risky style'
Ben Chilwell backed up his manager's comments, saying England, despite the errors against Netherlands, will not be deterred from the risky style which has been a key component of the team's success over the last couple of years.
"The style that we want to play, that has been brought in over the past few years, is obviously a style of football which can be risky, but the rewards are high if you get out of the press," he told Sky Sports News. "We saw that against Spain and against other teams where we've been successful doing it.
"Obviously, it didn't happen for us when we tried it against Netherlands, but we'll definitely keep going. We'll pick ourselves up and we'll go again."
Should England play out from the back?
Is playing out from the back an issue? Is a lack of dynamic midfielders the problem? Or did England just make stupid mistakes?
Jamie Carragher: "The goals didn't come from risks and it never came from playing out from the back, it came from stupid decisions."
Gary Neville: "The deep, embedded problem for English football and England teams is that they had no options to play through midfield."
Jamie Redknapp: "We're not saying let's rip this apart, otherwise you've got a major problem, because all the kids are playing out from the back now."
Analysis: England still have lots to learn
England have made great strides under Gareth Southgate but their defeat to Netherlands showed there is still plenty of room for improvement - and much still to learn.
Nations League live on Sky Sports
You can watch every minute of the Nations League finals live on Sky Sports.
Switzerland vs England - Sunday, June 9 from 1.30pm, live on Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Main Event; Kick-off at 2pm.
Portugal vs the Netherlands - Sunday, June 9 from 7pm, live on Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Main Event; Kick-off at 7.45pm.
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