HOT OR NOT: It's possible to be proud of Gareth Southgate but critical

HOT OR NOT: It’s possible to be immensely proud of England boss Gareth Southgate but critical of his tactics in the final… and the ‘street rats’ who invaded Wembley on Sunday are lucky that a tragedy was avoided

  • Gianluigi Donnarumma stood up like a man in front of England’s penalty takers
  • Novak Djokovic could overtake Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal with perfect year
  • Gareth Southgate has done immense job, but his final tactics were too negative
  • The ‘street rats’ of Wembley brought far more shame on Sunday than the result

It’s Hot or Not time as Sportsmail’s CRAIG HOPE tells us what’s been making him feel warm and what’s left him feeling cold this week…


Gianluigi Donnarumma

As a boy, opponents accused him of being too old to play, so big and so good was he. Pick on someone your own size was the message. So he did. Sadly for us, he picked England’s penalty-takers. The Italy keeper was Player of the Tournament, too. When his country needed him, he stood up like a man. Then again, they have been saying that about him for years.

Gianluigi Donnarumma stood up like a man against England, just like he has done for years

In winning his 20th Slam title, he moved level with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. But how remarkable if he edges ahead by becoming the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to complete a calendar Slam of all four majors. Only the US Open to go next month.

Gareth Southgate

OK, you may notice England’s boss is also in the column below. That is because, I believe, it is possible to be both immensely proud of Southgate, as well as critical of aspects of Sunday’s final. But this section is where he really belongs, for taking England to within a penalty shootout of a major trophy.

Gareth Southgate has made us immensely proud with a stunning run to the Euro 2020 Final


Gareth Southgate

There is regret at how the final played out. This is not with hindsight, it was with foresight that half the nation was screaming to introduce offensive players such as Jack Grealish far sooner than the 99th minute. Grealish should have started the quarter-final against Ukraine and, had he done so, he would have played his way into the team. The cautious approach that took England so far might just have contributed to the Italy defeat.

Southgate could have brought Jack Grealish on to the pitch sooner after not troubling Italy

Street Rats

That is how a friend who was at Wembley described them, the invading vermin who smashed down barriers and barged past stewards ahead of the Euro 2020 final. I can take losing a match — we are used to that — but a video of a dad running with his young boy to safety, well that really upset me. We were lucky a tragedy was avoided.

Bryson DeChambeau

A bad workman blames his tools, we are told. Now DeChambeau is not a bad golfer, but in criticising his clubs following a poor opening round at The Open, he left himself open to ridicule. ‘Stupid!’ screamed the headlines on Friday — and that was the verdict of his own club manufacturer!

Bryson DeChambeau opened himself up to ridicule after blaming his club for a bad round

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