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Analysis:Dithering Southgate needs to trust his bench

GELSENKIRCHEN, Germany : England were able to breathe a sigh of relief after a 2-1 Euro 2024 last-16 victory over Slovakia on Sunday, but for 94 minutes it was an abject display in front of a manager who seemed resistant to change even as his team's hopes slipped away.

Gareth Southgate will bring up 100 matches in charge of England with a quarter-final against Switzerland in Duesseldorf on Saturday, but was seconds away from probably being stuck on 99.

Jude Bellingham’s brilliant over-head kick equaliser in the final minute of stoppage time and Harry Kane’s extra-time winner saw England progress in a game where it took them 95 minutes to have a shot on target.

England were sleepwalking to defeat with Southgate seemingly unable to move away from his rigid Plan A.

Despite a woeful first-half display, it took until the 66th minute for the first substitute, Cole Palmer on for Kieran Trippier, and it appeared to be due to an injury for the left back rather than a tactical change.

Eberechi Eze came on for Kobbie Mainoo after 84 minutes, and England had still not had a shot on target when a second striker Ivan Toney was finally introduced for Phil Foden in the 94th minute in Southgate's very late last throw of the dice.

Toney eventually provided the cross for Kane’s winner, but it was Bellingham’s brilliant goal that spared Southgate a likely ignominious exit as England manager.

But good fortunate can only take you so far and Southgate's dithering in the dugout is nothing new.

It was the same in the 2018 World Cup semi-final against Croatia where it took until the 74th minute for him to bring on his first substitute. England lost 2-1 after extra time.

In the final of the last Euros against Italy at Wembley in 2021, England scored