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Euro 2024: England have ‘succession plan’ if Southgate leaves – FA

FA chief Mark Bullingham have a plan if Gareth Southgate leaves England – but says no approaches have been made for the Three Lions boss.

England's Gareth Southgate

FA chief Mark Bullingham says England have a succession plan in place if Gareth Southgate leaves after Euro 2024.

The head of English football’s governing body also said the Three Lions boss wants to wait until after the tournament to discuss his future.

Southgate contract expires in December and this summer’s European Championship will be his fourth major tournament in charge.

The 53-year-old was previously linked with Manchester United and recently suggested this summer’s tournament in journey could be his last – though Bullingham says no approaches have been made.

“We are sitting down after the tournament together and will talk about everything,” said Bullingham, when asked if he was keen for Southgate to remain in his role.

“Gareth has been really clear that he wants to talk about that after the tournament.

“I don’t want to provide any distraction for him and the team. I want to respect [that].”

Succession plan in place

Bullingham also rubbished suggestions the FA’s hierarchy do not have a plan in place should Southgate depart.

He said: “I’ve seen some things about, ‘Have we got a plan, haven’t we?’ Any organisation has a succession plan in place for their top employees, and we are no different to that.

“A succession plan normally includes everything from what you do for the short-term cover, through to a process you follow, through to [drawing up] a candidate pool. We have that for all our top employees.”

‘I think the world of Gareth’

Though he has not been immune from criticism, Southgate has had a transformative effect on England’s fortunes since taking over in 2016.

And Bullingham suggested he would be keen to keep the 53-year-old in the post past December if he can.

“I would say I think the world of Gareth, I think he has done a phenomenal job,” Bullingham added.

“I think he has transformed the fortunes of our team, and that’s not just off the pitch, and you can see the culture, but also the performances on the pitch.

“Since 1966, he has won about half of our knockout games, which is a measure we really use, so we value him massively.”

Picture of Cian Cheesbrough

Cian Cheesbrough

Cian is a sports journalist with experience writing for national title, including LiveScore, MailOnline, Eurosport and Sky Sports. He has covered a number of key events during his time in the industry, including from the press box at live Champions League fixtures.