Gareth Southgate shrugs off Euros criticism and says he's 'oblivious' to it as England qualify for knockout stages

Gareth Southgate has shrugged off criticism of his team's performances so far at Euro 2024 as England qualify for the knockout stages.

England are due to face Slovenia on Tuesday, in the hopes of securing the top spot in Group C - giving them the best chance going into the next round.

However, Southgate's side has so far laboured through the tournament in their opening two games, leading to some criticism.

This included player-turned-pundit Gary Lineker calling their performance against Denmark "s***".

But the England manager batted away questions about the criticisms at a news conference on Monday and said he "hadn't heard" what Lineker had said and wasn't interested in the noise around the team.

He was speaking before results on Monday night meant that England were guaranteed a place in the Euro 2024 knockouts as a best third-placed team at least.

It means that the game against Slovenia will decide whether the Three Lions finish first, second or third in their group.

Southgate added: "I'm oblivious to it [criticism from pundits]. It's not important to me.

"What's important to me is guiding this group of players through the tournament. We're a high-profile team with expectations, and I'm very comfortable living that life.

"I don't need to engage in the external, I'm my own biggest critic.

"The players are the same. There's nothing to be gained.

"We're brutally honest about what we need to do better - that's how you coach a team and how you improve."

Southgate added that "every other national team coach is probably experiencing the same thing".

He also revealed that Manchester United defender Luke Shaw, brought to the tournament injured, would not be fit in time for Tuesday's game.

After Spain defeated Albania on Monday, England, with four points from their first two games, are guaranteed to reach the knockout stages regardless of what happens against Slovenia on Tuesday evening.

Both Lineker and fellow ex-England captain Alan Shearer were outspoken in their criticism of England and captain Harry Kane after the draw against Denmark.

Lineker made the comments on his The Rest Is Football podcast and in response Kane claimed that former players had a responsibility to keep their opinions in check as they had been a part of England's long trophy drought.

In the aftermath, Lineker said that journalists had been "stirring the pot".

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Arsenal midfielder Declan Rice was also at Monday's news conference and echoed his manager's sentiments.

He said: "Naturally as players, you read stuff, and stuff can play on your mind. Obviously it's better to read positive stuff [in the media].

"I like to encourage teammates, the more you feel that the more confident you get. I think you'll see that on Tuesday, we'll turn a different page."

England managed an uninspired 1-0 win over Serbia in their first game and a disappointing 1-1 draw with Denmark in Frankfurt in their second game - that saw players booed and jeered by fans.

Despite fielding some of the best players at the tournament, England has struggled to produce the entertaining and convincing football many had hoped for - or that some of their rivals have managed.

An England win Tuesday would guarantee they avoid Germany, who topped their own group Sunday night thanks to a late goal, and ensure they play a third-place team in the next round.