Sansom exclusive: I really believe England can win the World Cup

Date: Friday 8th December 2017 at 12:37 pm
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England left-back legend Kenny Sansom is sure Gareth Southgate has a squad talented enough to win the Russia 2018 World Cup.

England’s World Cup draw is good and the game that stands out is Belgium. That is the toughest game. There’s no doubt that the other two games will be six points.

Alli and Kane will be crucial against Belgium. I think we’ll win all three our group matches. We have individual players that can win all three games.

The press have always been like “we can win it”. We didn’t lose a game in the 1982 World Cup and went out. In 1986, without the Maradona incident, we could have made the final.

But these are young players. Southgate must get the players up for it. “Come on, we can do this”. The management and the staff play a big part.

We have the players in the squad to win it. The ability in that team is good enough to go on and win it. I really believe we can win it. We have talent, there is no doubt, but the manager must be strong.

The players have to give 100% in every game. Keep going. It could be a good idea, if you go 1-0 up, to defend, but it’s risky. Teams might have powerful players from set-pieces.

If you’re doing well, 3-0 up, just keep the ball. At 2-0 it’s dangerous. All the games will be tough, hard, but having a special free-kick, or a corner or throw-ons, they can make a difference. These small things can make all the difference.

I remember Bobby Robson before the Poland game at the 1986 World Cup. We needed to win our final group game, after losing to Portugal and drawing with Morocco. Bobby tried to relax us and his team talk before the game lasted 20 minutes.

He was all “Don’t worry. You go out there and do it”, getting us nice and relaxed, nice and settled for the game. “…Don’t worry about those 60 million people watching at home.”

Ha ha! I hope Gareth Southgate doesn’t say that!

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