In 2020 Gareth Southgate was feted as the best leader the England football team had enjoyed for decades, due to their performance at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where the team reached the semi-finals and the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, where they were narrowly defeated in the final. Both performances were the closest the English men's football team had got to winning in decades.
Southgate's quiet, unassuming leadership persona won praise from his peers and the wider sporting community. In 2018, he won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Coach Award.
The former defender and midfielder took his first steps as a manager in 2006, when he took the job at Middlesbrough for three years. He also managed the England under-21 team from 2013 to 2016. Following the sudden departure of Sam Allardyce that same year, Southgate became the manager of England.