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24th Mar 2017

Gareth Southgate is in complete awe of Eddie Jones’ coaching philosophies

Gareth Southgate believes lessons can be learned from rugby

Sean McMahon

Lessons to be learned.

Football and rugby are two very different sports.

Football is generally a free-flowing game, one which is less reliant on structure and forward planning in comparison to rugby.

In rugby, meticulous planning goes into every type of scenario which can unfold on the pitch.

How will a team exit their 22′, how will a team defend a midfield scrum, how will a team penetrate a defence characterised by quick line speed, and so on.

That’s not to say certain situations on a football pitch cannot be prepared for, but in an overall context, football offers a greater responsibility on the player to react on their own behalf in certain situations.

With this in mind, it would be easy to believe that there would be few lessons to be learned in the training environments of both sports.

However, England football manager, Gareth Southgate, seems to possess a different view.

Just last month, Southgate visited Pennyhill Park, the base of the English rugby team ahead of their Six Nations clash with Wales.

The invitation has been returned, as Eddie Jones ran the rule over an English training session ahead of the friendly encounter with Lithuania on Sunday.

Southgate believes there are a number of lessons to be learned from a rugby environment, especially in regard to how the players take on their own responsibility when it comes to analysing the opposition.

“And the culture in rugby I think we can take something from.

“They get the players to present the opposition analysis, rather than it being fed by the coach,” Southgate told The Mirror.

The former Middlesbrough and England U-21 manager also revealed that the winning mentality which exists in Jones’ English set-up is something which he wants to instil in his own squad.

“And of course he (Jones) has a winning mentality – he is constantly asking for more.

“They were 18 games unbeaten and I saw his quote saying we are nowhere near ready to win a World Cup. He recognised what the end looks like and what that environment needs to look like.”

Southgate, who was awarded a four-year contract when he took over as caretaker manager after the resignation of Sam Allardyce, will be hoping that he can have the same level of success that Jones has had with the English rugby team.