Former England boss Steve McClaren believes Gareth Southgate’s side have caught up with the best teams in the world and will be contenders in every tournament they participate in.
The Three Lions hope to end 55-year wait for a major trophy were broken on Sunday as Italy won Euro 2020 after a penalty shootout.
However, McClaren believes English fans can look to the future with confidence.
“They are an incredible team,” he told BBC Radio 5 live.
“Gareth gave us a team we can be proud of, he united the nation and he gave us hope for the future and in the future there is hope.”
Southgate led England to the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2018 before going even further to Euro 2020.
The postponement of the European Championship until this year means England doesn’t have long to wait for the next big tournament, with the World Cup in Qatar starting in November 2022.
If England qualify, McClaren – who was the national team boss from 2006 to 2007 – believes the young Southgate side will be better equipped for it due to their heartbreak for Euro 2020.
He added: “We are now contenders for all competitions – and will certainly be in 18 months.
“We will learn from the two tournaments, a semi-final and a final – they had moments that will forge character and that is what it is about.”
After years of struggling to get past the quarter-finals in majors, McClaren believes England are now starting to see the payoff for work behind the scenes several years ago trying to close the gap with d ‘ other countries.
He said: “The work is being done by the Premier League, the FA and by Gareth who started the process eight or 10 years ago as the FA development manager. They have gone all the way and he there is a top-level treadmill, the best talent is coming.
“I’ve been involved in England for a few years and we’ve always been technically behind Spain and France and teams like that – tactically behind them, physically behind and mentally, but now we’ve caught up. can live with these teams. “
“Wembley stages will hurt World Cup bid”
Despite England’s positive image on the pitch at Euro 2020, there were disturbing scenes ahead of Sunday’s final, when a number of fans attempted to enter Wembley without tickets.
The Football Association (FA) said it would conduct a full examination of the incident, which saw fans fighting with stewards and police as they tried to walk through the gates.
Former West Ham United midfielder Kevin Nolan is concerned the scenes could hurt England’s hopes of hosting the 2030 World Cup.
He told BBC Radio 5’s Monday Night Club live: “It’s scary so you have these idiots storming people and could have hurt a lot of people and probably.
“It’s very worrying. What it did was undermine our vote to get the 2030 World Cup.
“We are talking about the absolute minority of this silly behavior.”
Former Manchester City defender Nedum Onuoha added: “All eyes were on us in the biggest game we have played, hosted at Wembley.
“We should be doing much, much better if we are to be seen as serious contenders for hosting events.”