ARSENE Wenger says England will reach the World Cup last four – if they can banish their inner doubts.
The former Arsenal boss, now Fifa’s head of global football development, is backing Gareth Southgate’s side to go deep in what he predicts will be the “World Cup of the last chance – and the high press”.
GettyArsene Wenger has backed England to go far into the tournament[/caption]
GettyEngland have endured a rough 2022[/caption]
GettyGareth Southgate led the Three Lions to the semi-final in 2018[/caption]
“They got to the semi-finals in Russia and then the Final in the Euros.
“But the doubt comes from what has happened over the past year.
“If they can get over that doubt in their own minds, they have the team that is good enough to reach the semi-finals.”
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Faith in Southgate’s team, or at least their skipper, is shared by Germany legend Jurgen Klinsmann.
The former Spurs striker said: “I will be interested in the No 9s in the tournament.
“I really suffer when I hear the phrase “false 9” so I’m hoping for the real No 9s to get some goals here – and I’m looking at Harry Kane.”
Wenger added: “In Russia four years ago it was all about a deep defensive line and counter-attacking.
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“This time it will be about the high press, the teams that can play out and have that courage, or the ones who go long.
“I expect to see the teams who want the ball being the most successful.
“But this is also a last chance tournament for the players who have dominated football for the last 15 years.
“You think about Ronaldo and Messi but there is also Neymar, Modric and Lewandowski, and some others.
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“There will not be another World Cup for them. It’s now or never.
“This is that last opportunity to show the world they deserve to win it and so these big players will have pressure on their shoulders and we will see how they cope with that.”