The head coach of England Gareth Southgate is pictured during the UEFA Euro 2020 football competition final draw in Bucharest on November 30, 2019. (Photo by Fabrice COFFRINI / AFP)

COACH Gareth Southgate says England’s record at the European Championship has been “appalling” but the current side have a real chance to excite the country again.

England, who reached the last four of the World Cup in 2018, have got to the Euro semis only once in the last 50 years – in 1996 when Southgate was playing for the country.

“The opportunity is for us to go further than so many teams in the past and our European Championship record has been appalling,” Southgate told reporters.

“They’ve got opportunity to really excite our country again. They know what that felt like two years ago from a slightly further distance and this time they get the chance to feel it ... really close up.”

England will face Croatia, the Czech Republic and either Scotland, Israel, Norway or Serbia in Group D. They open their campaign against Croatia on June 14.

England will play all three of their group games at Wembley, which will also host the semi-finals and final. - REUTERS