Premier League

Gareth Southgate sets record straight on Man Utd links

Erik ten Hag

Gareth Southgate insists he has had no conversations over replacing Erik ten Hag as Manchester United manager this summer.

With Sir Jim Ratcliffe heading into his first summer transfer window as co-owner, the INEOS chief has been tipped to cut ties with Ten Hag after a poor season which has left the Dutchman on the brink of overseeing United’s lowest-ever Premier League finish.

Multiple reports have named Southgate as a desired replacement, with some even claiming he is United‘s top target, but the England boss insists his focus remains solely on this summer’s European Championships.

“I’m not a big gambling man. They can make their odds but it’s not a conversation that’s been had with me,” he told ITV.

“I’ve got one thing to focus on and that’s having as successful a tournament with England as possible. Everything else is a complete irrelevance to me.”

Asked whether he would be interested in a return to club management, Southgate stressed: “If I start talking about that, then I’m already distracted from what I’m doing, so I think the country would expect that my focus is on England, and rightly so.”

Erik ten Hag

Ten Hag is under pressure / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages

In a separate interview with BBC, Southgate once again played down the links to United.

“For me, it’s not an issue and it never has been,” he stressed. “I have to deliver a successful tournament for England. There’s enough work involved in that.

“There will always be speculation about managers, because if you lose a couple of games, you’re in trouble – you win a couple of games and it is a different agenda.”

Southgate’s England contract runs until the end of 2024 and reports suggest the English FA are keen to tie him down to an extension, but any talks may be watched closely by United as they prepare to make a decision on Ten Hag’s future this summer.


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