Gareth Southgate has praised Raheem Sterling’s performance in England’s 4-0 win over Kosovo on Sunday.

The Man City winger was dropped by Southgate for England’s 7-0 thrashing of Montenegro three days ago following his bust-up with international team-mate Joe Gomez at the beginning of the week.

Raheem Sterling terrorised Kosovo’s defence

Getty Images – Getty

Raheem Sterling terrorised Kosovo’s defence

Sterling, who insists he has made up with Gomez, played a huge role in Harry Kane’s goal, before assisting Marcus Rashford in Pristina.

England manager Southgate told talkSPORT: “Well, we didn’t get a lot of the ball to him for about 55 minutes. When we did, half of them were around his neck.

“I think the two bits of quality, in terms of the assists, and three or four other moments when he had the shot in the first-half, the acceleration for Harry’s goal, I mean, goodness me, the thought of being a full-back against him one against one, he’d keep you awake all night.

“I’m really pleased for him and I think there is no need for us to say how important a player he is for us.”

Harry Winks was another England player who shone against Kosovo as he opened the scoring with his first Three Lions goal.

Harry Winks had a superb game playing slightly further forward in midfield

Getty – Contributor

Harry Winks had a superb game playing slightly further forward in midfield

The Tottenham ace, who played slightly further forward in midfield alongside Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with Declan Rice behind them, strengthened his case to start for Southgate’s side at Euro 2020.

Southgate said: “They [the midfielders] are all different types of players.

“We’ve talked in the past in the way Harry can receive in tight areas, his feet to be able to turn out of trouble and his awareness of where the pressure is coming from, and we haven’t got many players like that in England, frankly.

“The two previous games he played in, there wasn’t so much pressure in our two thirds of the pitch.

“Tonight he had to receive in tighter areas where the team were suffering a little bit to get out of pressure.

“He had a big part to play, not just the goal that calmed everything, but the fact he was comfortable to receive deeper and get the play started for us.”


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