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Gareth Southgate is still on course to receive a knighthood even though England failed to bring football home, according to reports.

The Three Lions were beaten by Italy on penalties in the Euro 2020 final on Sunday night to prolong their 55-year wait for a major trophy.

In the build-up to the Wembley encounter, there was growing speculation Southgate could soon be knighted, having also led his side to the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2018.

And the 50-year-old – who is already an OBE – remains on course to receive the honour despite the fact Gianluigi Donnarumma broke English hearts.

Southgate is expected to be knighted despite England's defeat in the Euro 2020 final

That's according to The i newspaper , which claims a Whitehall source believes Southgate's record as England manager warrants a knighthood.

He made the step up from England Under-21 manager to the first-team hot seat in September 2016 and has a formidable 63.9 per cent win ratio.

Southgate has also won many admirers with his thoughtful, considered comments on issues which are important to him and his players, such as taking the knee before matches.

He received a personal letter from the Queen ahead of the final, while prime minister Boris Johnson declared he has done an "absolutely outstanding job".

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"It’s been fantastic to have the letter from the Queen, a letter from the Prime Minister to all of the team, and the recognition that the players and all the staff have gone about this in the right way," said Southgate.

"We had a fabulous reception when we left St George’s [training ground]; villages came out lining the route and people pulled over in lay-bys.

"You got more of a sense of what is going on outside the bubble that we’ve been in."

Does Gareth Southgate deserve a knighthood? Comment below.

With a knighthood expected, England may arrive at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar led by Sir Gareth Southgate.

He outlined his aim to take charge of the team next year in a press conference on Monday and also admitted he needs to "reflect" on this summer's near miss.

"I don't think now is an appropriate time to be thinking about it," said Southgate.

"We have to qualify for Qatar. I need time to go away and reflect on Euro 2020. I need a rest. It is an amazing experience but to lead your country in these tournaments takes its toll.

"I said at the time it is great to have that internal support, you greatly value that as a manager.

"I don't want to commit to anything longer than I should and I don't want to outstay my welcome so all of those things need consideration.

"I want to take the team to Qatar, I feel we have made progress over the four years, we have had a fourth, a third and a second-placed finish and that is as good as anyone."