Thursday 19 October 2017

Gareth Southgate to allow England WAGs at World Cup team hotel

Gareth Southgate
Gareth Southgate

Steve Madely

Gareth Southgate has said that England players’ partners will be welcome at the team hotel at next summer’s World Cup finals, with FA officials already scouting training bases.

The England manager wants his players to take over an entire hotel to ensure privacy in Russia, but he says relatives will be allowed to visit at selected times.

England are expected to confirm qualification for the finals against Slovenia on Thursday and Lithuania next Sunday, but planning has already begun for the tournament.

“I don’t think there’s ever been a tournament where the whole family has been in with us the whole time, but I will encourage the families to come and the lads to see them the day after a game,” said Southgate (above).

“We want that environment where the players are relaxed, otherwise it becomes a bubble where there’s nothing else in your life and the small things become bigger than they should be.”

Southgate has a clear idea of the kind of hotel he wants if England confirm their place in Russia.

“It would be wrong not to plan,” he said. “There are some key factors around distance from your base to your training ground. Ideally the hotel would just be for us because it’s important for the players that they can feel relaxed.”

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