Gareth Southgate believes that Bukayo Saka goal at Wembley on his birthday was the closure he needed after his penalty miss in the Euro 2020 final. This was his first appearance at Wembley since the Euro 2020 final since Italian keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma saved his penalty. The Arsenal youngster was the subject of racist abuse after the Euro 2020 final on social media. The fans cheered his name the loudest in their World Cup qualification match against Andorra when the teams were announced. Supporters also had a huge banner unveiled with his face along with those of Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho.
“It was the perfect birthday present for me,” Saka said. “I am really happy with the reception everyone gave me. It really shows how proud they are of me and I think that meant a lot for me and it made me want to give my all.”
“It really made a difference. Even now, I can hear so many fans chanting my name. It means everything. It makes me believe that everyone supports me through different things.” he added. “This is what I dreamed about. Playing at Wembley in front of a full crowd and my family, scoring on my 20th birthday. I am really happy.”
“He got a fabulous reception, before the game, during the game,” England manager Gareth Southgate said talking about Bukayo Saka. “You can see how popular he is with the rest of the team as well. I hope it is closure but I don’t think there’s a player in that dressing room who doesn’t think positively about what he did all summer.”