11 March 2020

England manager Phil Neville insists he'll know when it's time to step down from role

England boss Phil Neville has said he will know when it's time to quit as manager ahead of the Lionesses match against Spain this evening.

The team are currently competing at the SheBelieves Cup where it looks unlikely they will retain the title after they lost 2-0 to the US.

Despite a win against Japan last time out, Neville has been criticised for the players performances, but is confident he still has full backing from the FA.

He said: “I think it’s really important to have that backing because if they start wobbling then it’s time to change and to look elsewhere. You need the backing of the people with you.

“I have such a good relationship with [head of women’s football] Sue Campbell and she’s driving the tank alongside me. She says that to me all the time and I include her in everything.

“I told her what vision we had – in terms of the young players – and she is a visionary. You have to look beyond the criticism.  I own a football club [Salford City] myself and I think it’s important to give support to the manager. It’s so important.

White celebrated with her trademark celebration after snatching victory for the Lionesses (PA Images)

“Stability is the key to success, and I am lucky I have that from the people I work for. I am in close contact with Greg (Clarke) and I meet with them all the time and they have utter faith in what we are doing.

“There is a real balance and acceptability that we have to improve, but they know the journey we are going on and ultimately when I look at the situation and myself, I will know myself if it is not working. I will know if it’s time to go and they know that I’m that type of person."

Neville, who retired as a player in 2013, also believes that experience of hanging up his boots will help him in his managerial career.

“I came off after a game when I was 36 against Wigan and I played terrible," he added. "Literally at half time I retired from football because I knew full well my time had come.

“I went to see [Everton manager] David Moyes the next day. I stayed until the end of the season and that was it. I knew myself – I’m quite honest and reflective in that way.”

England v Spain will kick off this evening at 9.15pm GMT.

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