England Coach Says Bukayo Saka Has Undergone Mentality Shift
Three Lions of England head coach, Gareth Southgate believes that Bukayo Saka has undergone a mental transformation to become a top player.
Southgate whose team defeated Italy and Ukraine in the first phase of Euro 2024 qualifiers in March said Bukayo Saka has the mindset required to maintain his extraordinary development.
Saka scored an incredible long-range goal and provided an assist as England defeated Ukraine 2-0 at Wembley Stadium on Sunday.
He was named player of the match for his superb effort in the win over Ukraine.
The 21-year-old has played a big role for his country’s side while also contributing to the success of Premier League leaders Arsenal with 10 assists and 12 goals so far this season.
Only Dixie Dean (16), Jimmy Greaves (16), Wayne Rooney (12), and Michael Owen (10) have scored more goals for the Three Lions at 21-year-old than Saka, who now has eight for England.
While reacting to Saka’s form so far, coach Southgate said, “I just think when he’s in front of goal now, he plays with real belief.”
“That’s evident with his club and in his games with us. You’re expecting him to score now when he goes through and that’s been a mentality shift as much as it’s anything technical because he has always had the technique.
“I think he knows that to be a top wide player you need the numbers for goals and assists and without a doubt he has delivered that all season.”
The coach continued, “His hunger, his humility is what has got him on a good path. He has all the attributes to continue to improve and learn because that’s how he’s wired.
“I don’t see that changing with how he and his family are. He’s got great support around him and all of those things are important for a young player.”