Ex-Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger tips England to ‘at least semi-final’ at World Cup… if…


ARSENE Wenger says England will reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup 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 deeper in what he predicts will be the ‘last chance World Cup and the press high”.

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Arsene Wenger has backed England to go far in the tournamentCredit: Getty
England have endured a tough 2022

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England have endured a tough 2022Credit: Getty
Gareth Southgate led the Three Lions to the semi-final in 2018

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Gareth Southgate led the Three Lions to the semi-final in 2018Credit: Getty

Wenger, head of the World Cup Technical Study Group, told SunSport: “If you look at the last few years, England should be in the semi-finals at least.

“They reached the semi-finals in Russia and then the final of the Euros.

“But the doubt comes from what has happened over the last year.

“If they can overcome that doubt in their minds, they have a good enough team to reach the semi-finals.”

Faith in Southgate’s team, or at least in their skipper, is shared by German legend Jurgen Klinsmann.

The former Spurs striker said: “He is interested in the 9 in the tournament.

“I suffer a lot when I hear the phrase ‘false 9’, so I hope the real No 9s get some goals here, and I’m looking at Harry Kane.”

Wenger added: “In Russia four years ago it was 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 and have that courage, or those that stretch.

“I look forward to seeing the teams that want the ball have more success.

“But this is also a tournament of last chance for the players who have dominated football for the last 15 years.

“You think of Ronaldo and Messi, but there’s also Neymar, Modric and Lewandowski, and a few others.

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“There will not be another World Cup for them. It’s now or never.

“This is the last chance to show the world that they deserve to win it and so these great players will have pressure on their shoulders and we will see how they do.”

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