England manager Gareth Southgate’s little-known Portsmouth connection revealed 

HE’S the man being hailed as a national treasure, spearheading the Three Lions to an incredible run to the semi-finals – so far – of the World Cup.

But Gareth Southgate’s past has a little-known connection to Portsmouth – as few people know he lived in the city as a child.

Gareth Southgate after the final whistle on Saturday

Gareth Southgate after the final whistle on Saturday

In his 2003 book Woody and Nord, written by him and Andy Woodman, the future England manager revealed that he spent his first school years in Portsmouth, while his father, Clive Southgate, worked  at the IBM office in Cosham.

Southgate spent more than three years in Portsmouth, believed to be from 1973 to 1976 – and started school here, though never kicked a ball for his school football team.

In the book, Southgate wrote: ‘After Bury, dad was transferred to Portsmouth and we spent over three years down there.

‘Portsmouth was where I started school but the most vivid memory I have of our time there was the day we left.

‘The primary school I attended was due to have its first football match on that very day, but because we were moving, I couldn’t play.

‘To me it was a terrible injustice and I held it against my mum.’

The family then moved to Crawley, which then became the permanent home of the Southgates.

Had that move never happened, we might have seen a young Gareth Southgate in a Pompey kit, rather than playing for Crystal Palace.

n Were you at school in Portsmouth with Gareth Southgate? Or do you remember his dad Clive at IBM? Call the newsdesk on 023 9262 2118.