I think he has shown that he hasn't enough flexibility.
It was 3 5 2 or nothing.
Coming up against sides like Croatia with this England squad needs a bit more thought about how to change the game.
Slavan Bilic was spot on after the game when he talked about how this was the first time Croatia came up against 3 at the back and it took them 45 mind to work it out but after half time they had it sussed.
I agree. The saying 'we had no plan b' is a cliche amongst football fans to excuse the fact that their players had an off day for whatever reason but for England it was probably true tonight because from the start it was clear they weren't going to have an off day and they were excellent for much of that first 45 minutes. But as you say, come the second half Croatia had sussed it.
I remember watching England play Scotland in the qualifiers amongst other matches they were involved in in that group and they were very underwhelming. But Southgate was proactive enough in recent months to revert to that back three which has made them look a much more solid unit if still unspectacular. It'll be interesting to see in the next few months and ahead of the Euro 2020 qualifiers whether a new shape or two will emerge to offer something of a plan b.
Overall though, I've been impressed by the way he has conducted himself at this World Cup, to the media, to the fans, to opposition teams. I moved down to London recently and, even if I'm not English myself, the atmosphere and general humour amongst the English was infectious and I think Southgate's gentlemanly conduct and very inclusive manner is something that has set a really great example to many fans much needed after many of them disgraced themselves 2 years ago when they travelled around France taunting about Brexit and getting into scraps. Given that England disgraced themselves on the field as well with a rank rotten manager who lacked any sense of self awareness and arrogant delusional beliefs regarding his own abilities, England have actually come a long long way. Comic and hilarious but I suppose such hilarity had to end sometime and it's somewhat surprising that Southgate was the man to end the joke.
The issue for them now is how do they continue to keep fans interested beyond this and into the Euros and the next World Cup? I think Southgate will do everything he can to do just that, and I'm sure he'll be as proactive as ever but history shows that the FA will probably find a way of squandering all that hope, passion and commitment...as well as the prospects of all those talented English youngsters in their ranks.