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Arsenal’s Wilshere the blueprint for England, says Southgate

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By Andrew Tuft

Saturday 30 June 2012

Gareth Southgate has called on English football to produce five or six players the quality of Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere in every new generation of players rather than one or two, ESPN has reported.

In the aftermath of England’s exit from Euro 2012 there has been much discussion over the future of English football and the way in which young players are developed and Southgate, who is the Football Association’s head of elite development, has said England are simply not producing players of a high enough standard and putting too much pressure on those they are producing.

Southgate added: “I feel we're pinning so much on Wilshere. What we want to be able to say is that there are five or six, not just Jack. In every era it's one, isn't it? For the last five years, it was maybe Wayne Rooney. Now it's Jack. But top countries have five or six, they churn them out.

The former Middlesbrough manager, who won 57 caps in nine years as an international player, pointed to countries such as Spain, Germany and Holland as nations which produce a large amount of talented players. Southgate insisted that simply giving the England manager a larger pool of high-quality players to choose from would be a positive step for the national team.

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