‘Can kill it’ - Southgate’s WAGs decision impacting England’s Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham stars

England boss Gareth Southgate has addressed concerns of a potential Covid outbreak derailing the Three Lions’ World Cup campaign.

England players were only able to meet their partners briefly after their 6-2 win against Iran, and haven’t since been able to properly integrate their partners into the competition. The players have their partners dotted across Doha while some of them fly in from Dubai on a match to match basis.

Three Lions manager Gareth Southgate is aware that players spouses and partners are a major part of any international tournament like this, but is also quite keen on focus and observing Covid rules - even though host nation Qatar have almost relaxed all rules and you can fly in without having to show any form of Covid clearance.

During the Euro 2020 tournament, Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell had to isolate after contracting the virus which disrupted the team, and even though there is a feeling that we’ve seen the worst of the pandemic, Southgate wants to study the data and see how strong his team is before relaxing socialisation rules.

The England boss said: “I think towards the end (of the last tournament), they had to batten it down a bit more because they had a few positive cases so we’re going to have to monitor it throughout.

“There’s this balance of the spirit and happiness of the group and the medical line of zero risk, and sometimes if you’re going to take zero risks it can kill it for everybody, so we’ve got to try and find that balance. We’re going to see how the next few days go and we’ve talked about maybe looking at something after the second game but we’ve got to monitor what the rates are out here as much as anything else.”

Southgate and his team have sent out a message that despite concerns around Qatar hosting the tournament they will do all they can to end the wait for the World Cup trophy since 1966. Argentina, one of the possible opponents at the knockout stages, were defeated by Saudi Arabia, a team ranked lower than Iran who received a real baptism of fire at the hands of the Three Lions.