Gareth Southgate tactical game can help Enzo Maresca if Michael Olise transfer is struck

Gareth Southgate tactical game can help Enzo Maresca if Michael Olise transfer is struck

There is plenty of talk over what line-up Gareth Southgate will choose for England’s first Euro 2024 game against Serbia at the weekend.

The area that has sparked the most conversation and debate is the three players who will be behind Harry Kane. There are four players in serious contention, it seems, with each one of them having sensational seasons for their clubs.

Jude Bellingham scored 23 goals in all competitions for Real Madrid to help Los Blancos clinch a historic double, including the club’s 15th Champions League trophy. Meanwhile, Bukayo Saka starred for Arsenal as they came close to Manchester City in the Premier League title race.

Phil Foden also has a serious chance at starting in the front four for the Three Lions after he won the Premier League Player of the Season for his incredible form at Man City. Chelsea supporters, though, will be desperate to see Cole Palmer get some minutes at the tournament.

Palmer set Stamford Bridge alight in his debut season with the west London club. In most teams, Palmer would be one of the first names on the team sheet but in this England attack, which has some frightening talent on show, his place in the side is not guaranteed whatsoever.

There could be an instance where we see Foden start from the left, Bellingham in the middle and Saka on the right. Alternatively, though, there could be a world where Palmer starts in the centre, acting as the No.10 behind Kane.

Such a move is something Mauricio Pochettino trialled at times during his sole season as Chelsea boss. Although Palmer seemed to play his best football when cutting in on his deadly left foot from the right wing.

According to Transfermarkt, the 22-year-old was used on the right wing on 18 occasions last term, scoring 12 and assisting five in all competitions for the Blues. In attacking midfield, Palmer was used for the same amount of games; he scored the same amount but assisted two more goals.

It is certainly a position that newly-appointed head coach Enzo Maresca can use Palmer in – and he might have to if the club can win the race to sign Michael Olise. The Frenchman, whose position is on the right wing, is a long-term target for Chelsea although they are yet to make an official move for the Crystal Palace attacker this summer.

If Southgate does use Palmer behind the striker in the Euros, then it will certainly give Maresca more data before he meets his squad for the first time. Palmer, though, does not mind too much where he plays – as long as he does.

“I enjoyed playing in that role tonight but to be totally honest, I’m comfortable in any of the attacking positions,” Palmer said back in September of last year. “Whether that’s as a No.10, out wide on the left or right, or even as a striker, I’m happy to do a job for the team.

“I like to get on the ball and that role allows me to do that but wherever the manager needs me, I’m happy to play.”

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *