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Talking points ahead of England’s last match of 2020 against Iceland

Iceland v England Match Report, 05/09/2020

Raheem Sterling was England’s hero as a turgid Nations League encounter with Iceland exploded into penalty drama in the final minutes, with Gareth Southgate’s men emerging as 1-0 victors.

Harry Kane had an early goal incorrectly ruled out but it soon became a tale of frustration for England against the side who famously humiliated them against the odds at Euro 2016.

Kyle Walker’s red card teed up the prospect of another ignominious outcome, but Sterling won a spot kick in the final minute when Sverrir Ingason – who, like Walker received a second booking – handled his shot following a right-wing corner.

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The Manchester City forward rolled his effort home before a further stoppage-time sting in the tail.

Joe Gomez clumsily fouled substitute Holmbert Fridjonsson in the box, although Birkir Bjarnason opted for a contrasting approach to Sterling’s and blazed woefully high and wide.

Kane was flagged offside when he slid in Sterling’s sixth-minute cross at the far post. Without VAR in operation, there was no recourse to replays that suggested the goal should have stood.

Walker had a rasping shot deflected into the side netting and, from the resulting corner, Sterling was caught flat-footed and a presentable opportunity went begging – an error that paled next to Declan Rice’s horrible air shot from Jadon Sancho’s cross.

Set pieces increasingly looked to be England’s most potent weapon as their hosts clogged up central areas to rob Southgate’s men of any rhythm.

In the 64th minute, Iceland striker Jon Dadi Bodvarsson almost glanced Kieran Trippier’s left-wing delivery into his own net.

Frustration was evident when Walker crudely flung himself into a challenge on Arnor Ingvi Traustason to be shown his second yellow card.

Mason Greenwood replaced Kane to win his first cap, meaning England’s regular penalty taker was absent when the decisive moment arrived.

Despite his patchy record from the spot at club level, Sterling held his nerve impressively – no guarantee, as Bjarnason handily demonstrated a few moments later.

What does it mean? Iceland’s nuisance value here to stay

More than four years since dealing out England’s greatest humiliation, Iceland again showed they are no one’s fools.

A play-off place for a berth in next year’s European Championships demonstrate Erik Hamren’s men are no flash in the pan. It would be a brave person who backs against them gutsing their way to the finals once more… unless they are forced into a penalty shoot-out at any stage.

The coolest one

Even considering the shambles of England’s 2016, Sterling was at a particularly low ebb. Amid criticism of his performances following an underwhelming first season at City, he dubbed himself «the hated one» on social media.

No one in the England set-up has travelled further and more impressively since then, and a man of considerable stature within and beyond football stepped up as player of his status should do to seal the point.

17 — Raheem Sterling has been directly involved in 17 goals in his last 12 games for England (11 goals, 6 assists). Composed. pic.twitter.com/c5jGYjYPSk

Walker’s marching orders could leave him with a long way back

Having been shown a yellow card for a 33rd-minute foul on Albert Gudmundsson, a defender of Walker’s experience and quality should have known much better when he foolishly erred to be sent off.

The Manchester City man can have no complaints and, with Trippier and Trent Alexander-Arnold already in the mix and Aaron Wan-Bissaka awaiting a first senior cap, he did not need to give Southgate any reason to think ill of him.

What’s next?

England remain in Scandinavia when they when they face Denmark in Copenhagen on Tuesday, while Iceland travel to Belgium.

England 4-0 Iceland: 5 talking points from a dead-rubber win for the Three Lions | UEFA Nations League 2020-21

England won their final UEFA Nations League game of the 2020-21 campaign tonight, defeating Iceland 4-0 at Wembley. The match was actually a dead-rubber, as England couldn’t qualify for the finals while Iceland had already been relegated. But it was still good to see Gareth Southgate’s side express themselves a little more.

After some early pressure from England, Declan Rice opened the scoring with a flicked header from a Phil Foden free-kick on 20 minutes. And just four minutes later, Mason Mount doubled the lead after some quick attacking play.

Iceland soaked up an insane amount of pressure for the remainder of the first half, but England couldn’t find another goal. And after Birkir Saevarsson was sent off for a second bookable offense, the visitors were forced to drop even deeper.

They were able to hold England off for a little longer, but it was never going to last, and a brilliant quickfire double for Foden in the last 10 minutes gave Southgate’s side an impressive victory.

Here are five talking points from England’s win over Iceland.

#1 The game felt like an England World Cup qualifier

Everyone was well aware that this game was a dead rubber before it began, but in the end, it didn’t even resemble an international friendly. Instead, this was more akin to the kind of games that England face during qualifying campaigns for the Euros or the World Cup – a 90-minute attempt to break down a horribly deep defense that usually ends with a heavy victory.

Did Iceland come to Wembley with any attacking intent at all? To be fair to them, it did seem like they did early on in the game. But it was soon painfully clear that they were hugely outclassed. England pinned them into their own half for the majority of the game – enjoying 78% possession – and on another night, could’ve had another four goals.

Essentially, the UEFA Nations League shouldn’t be this easy, and likely will never be this easy again, as Iceland have now been relegated from League A. However, it was still a game worth watching purely because England’s players at least showed attacking intent and looked like they wanted to be there.

#2 England looked much improved without their dual holding midfielders

The doubters will definitely tell England fans not to get carried away with tonight’s win, as, after all, it was against a very weak Iceland side. However, compared to the rest of their UEFA Nations League campaign, this was a massive breath of fresh air.

Since switching to a 3-4-3 system back in September, England’s games had become a real slog to watch, with Gareth Southgate’s men playing dour football devoid of creativity. However, the truth is that 3-4-3 need not be such a defensive system – it was being made so by Southgate’s penchant for picking two holding midfielders in the center of the pitch.

On the other hand, Tonight’s game saw Mason Mount partnering Declan Rice in midfield, and the difference was marked right away. Mount buzzed around from the start of the game on and off the ball, and it was easy to see that he was providing a link to England’s three attackers – Jack Grealish, Harry Kane, and Phil Foden.

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All four men ended up having an outstanding game – even if Kane didn’t score – and England could well have had more goals than the four they got.

Essentially, the message to Southgate should be clear. If England are to play a 3-4-3, then one of the two central midfield spots must be handed to an offensively-minded player – even if that involves leaving Jordan Henderson out of the side altogether. England are simply a far better team for it.

England’s Euro 2020 final run reflects how Gareth Southgate and players changed a nation’s mood

Taylor Twellman and Ian Darke preview the Euro 2020 final between England and Italy. (2:21)

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BURTON UPON TRENT, England — It was in the months after England’s run to the 2018 World Cup semifinals when manager Gareth Southgate began to realise the impact he had made on the country.

«What hit me coming back from Russia was families coming up to me on the street, people coming up to me on the street from all backgrounds of our country and saying they felt they could go to a game now and not be abused at the stadium, connect with the team,» Southgate said ahead of England’s Euro 2020 final against Italy on Sunday (3 p.m. ET; stream LIVE on ESPN, ESPN+).

«They felt part of it. And that inclusivity is really important for us because I think that is what modern England is. We know it hasn’t always been the case and there are historic reasons for that. But that level of tolerance and inclusion is what we have to be about moving forward.»

That reconnection between the team and its supporters reached new heights after Wednesday’s semifinal victory over Denmark, when Southgate and his players joining more than 60,000 fans in a rendition of Neil Diamond’s «Sweet Caroline» after the final whistle. It was quite a contrast to opinions of the team early in the competition.

With an array of attacking talent including Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jack Grealish, Bukayo Saka, Phil Foden and Jadon Sancho, fans anticipated a line-up brimming with flair that sought to offset longstanding concern about a suspect defence, which would be weakened further by the absence of Harry Maguire at the start of the tournament.

There was consternation at Southgate’s team selections in the group stage; Grealish was limited to a super-sub role, Rashford featured even less and Sancho missed out entirely on the squad for the opening game against Croatia.

Sterling’s goal secured a winning start, but a dour 0-0 draw against Scotland in game two increased calls for England to play without the handbrake, which only got louder when a group-clinching 1-0 win over Czech Republic was claimed despite an expected goals output of 0.0 in the second half.

Since then, though, Southgate’s studious approach has gradually won over a viewing public growing in belief that its long wait for tournament glory could soon be over. First came a last-16 win against Germany, then Ukraine were thrashed in Rome, before the comeback triumph over Denmark to clinch a final spot.

Gab & Juls’ combined England, Italy XI

Gab & Juls select a starting lineup from Italy and England ahead of the Euro 2020 final.

Winning solves everything, as they say, but England’s upturn in results and the unity of a nation behind the team is the product of a cultural shift Southgate has been a key figure in initiating. Whereas past teams have been burdened by a fear of failure or a lack of enthusiasm, the current squad incarnation has been encouraged to express itself, on and off the pitch.

Sterling and Sancho are just two of several players to champion racial equality and Rashford forced the British government into a change of policy over free school meals, while Tyrone Mings and Jordan Henderson were among a group of professionals to speak to ministers about tackling online abuse.

The players are considering making a donation to the National Health Service from their Euro 2020 prize money, a further sign that, far from being detached from public life, this group is actively engaging and seeking to change it for the better. And they take their lead from their manager, one of the most thoughtful and effective communicators in football.

«I hope they have represented the country in a way they can relate to,» Southgate said. «I feel that’s important. With the national team, it’s different to clubs. Some clubs have clear identities and I think they are powerful because of that.

«We have a view of what being English should represent and standards we want to hit. You still have to win football matches. If you don’t, those messages and things we stand for don’t have the same impact. But I think we still have to be consistent in what we think is important.

«We have exceptional examples of players setting a really good example for young kids who are watching them and will aspire to be them through this tournament. It’s important that their parents when they are talking to those kids can say, ‘we are quite happy for you to be a Raheem [Sterling], a Marcus [Rashford], a Kalvin Phillips’ or whoever they might be because they stand for the right things off the pitch as well as on it.»

Gareth Southgate has taken England to a first tournament final since the 1966 World Cup. Getty

When Southgate took over five years ago, the England team was in a dark place. The aftermath of a last-16 exit against Iceland at Euro 2016 led to Roy Hodgson’s resignation, then replacement Sam Allardyce lasted 67 days — and just one game — before leaving his post when an undercover newspaper investigation found he was offering advice on how to circumvent FA rules on player transfers.

It was the latest unedifying chapter in a calamitous story, but Southgate began systematically deconstructing the flaws inherent in the national team’s psyche — a fear of failure, an inferiority complex against top opponents and a hatred of penalty shootouts — and the results have been remarkable: Semifinal runs at the last World Cup and in UEFA’s inaugural Nations League a year later before delivering a first tournament final in 55 years at Euro 2020.

«I was moving into a job where the profile was way beyond anything I’d had before so there was no way I was going to be the finished article; I’m still not,» said Southgate, whose prior managerial experience consisted of three years at Middlesbrough and three more in charge of England’s Under-21s.

«You’ve obviously got to gain confidence yourself that you can get the results and the things you implement are going to work and then the players see evidence that those things are working and then they start to believe in what you are telling them about the opposition or the way we need to play. There is no short cut to that.»

Southgate is addressing selected media at St George’s Park, the national team’s base that opened in 2012. The Football Association unveiled an «England DNA» two years later, but only under the current regime has the change in culture around the senior team really taken effect, with the man in charge growing in confidence and belief that what he is doing is working.

«When you are more comfortable in yourself, which I think I have become in the role,» Southgate said. «Once you have got that comfort in yourself, if you deliver something that is crap then you accept, ‘OK, we didn’t get that one right, we will try a different route’. Whereas you might worry about that a bit more if you weren’t comfortable in yourself. That takes time.»

Such work has been undertaken during a tumultuous time for the country as a whole. The «Brexit» vote to leave the European Union took place before that defeat to Iceland and created fault lines that have only grown in the interim, with each side of the divide more entrenched.

And the last 18 months have seen Britain affected by global issues. Racial tensions have increased, with players showing support for social justice causes in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death in the United States. The decision to take a knee before matches led to criticism from some politicians and booing by some fans.

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Meanwhile, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which caused the Euros to be delayed by a year, hit the country so hard that it recorded the world’s highest death rate early in 2021, prior to the successful implementation of a widespread vaccination programme.

And so, while Euro 2020 has given England an overdue reason to party, Southgate is mindful of the complex strands that make up the nation’s rediscovered patriotism. He is, though, keen to focus on the positives.

«I think there are historic things that we should be proud of,» he said. «We’ve had unbelievable inventions in this country.

«We have so many things here that we should be proud of that we probably underestimate that, maybe if we were living in other countries, we always see what’s good about them, but we are always looking at the negatives of our own country and yet we have got so much to be proud of and so much talent coming through in all industries really.»

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Southgate deflects praise for England’s resurgence to his players, but there is another, inescapable narrative. Even if he claims that «those sorts of moments in your life don’t have to define you,» the past month has continued what began three years ago in Russia: A chance, as a manager, to rectify the disappointment he felt at Euro ’96, when his missed penalty led to England’s exit at the semifinal stage.

The 50-year-old rolls the wedding ring around his finger when asked to discuss the high regard in which he is held, having become the first England boss to reach a major tournament final since Sir Alf Ramsey at the 1966 World Cup. In his response, Southgate invokes another of his predecessors as he — again — seeks to marry the twin objectives of a successful team and developing players as people.

«Sir Bobby [Robson] . was a fantastic role model as well as getting results with the team. Just the way he was with people, the time he had for people; he was like that with me as a player whenever I met him and as a young manager. Those sorts of things do play on your mind; that you’re following this line of history that we talked to the players about.»

Robson presided over near misses of his own as England manager, but Southgate has taken a team to the brink. «This is our moment,» he said on Friday; one more win at Wembley would complete the transformation.

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Southgate’s summary

The Three Lions boss provides his assessment of the victory, as well as a look back at some previous encounters against Iceland


England boss Gareth Southgate spoke immediately after the match, to provide his thoughts on the victory and his team’s performance.

“There were good opportunities for young players, especially, but also some older players. We are still trying to build and improve all the time. There was some lovely football, it was good to watch, and for the young ones to get their goals was very special.

“The reality is that a lot of the squad we have had over the past three months are going to peak in three, maybe five years’ time.

“That is when they will have a lot more caps, a lot of experience internationally and a lot more club experience. We think it is worth investing the time in them and they are learning a lot from very good senior professionals.

“We are still working on the balance and profiles of players in the system.

“To see Bukayo (Saka) again was a real plus, he’s had three really excellent performances through this week, for somebody so young especially.

“It gives us balance – to have an attack-minded player in that position is really helpful.

#ThreeLions boss Gareth Southgate joins us live to give his thoughts on tonight’s win over Iceland https://t.co/NWdrpusoZQ

“It was good to see Mason (Mount) in that central area again and I thought he made excellent forward runs.

“Our attacking play was very, very good. Right from the back, the players built with the ball so well. They moved it crisply, they took up good positions. Then Phil (Foden), Jack (Grealish), Harry (Kane), their link play was excellent.

“I’m really pleased for Phil (Foden). He’s such an exciting player.

“It was a big week for him to come back in and it was not easy to walk through the door when you have left as he did previously.

“But for us, it was done and we know what he is capable of. It was good to get him into the game against Ireland and to get the two goals today was a glimpse for everybody of what he is capable of.

“It’s just getting that right balance. They are going to have another five months of the season now with their clubs where they are going to play in big games and learn even more.”

Previous Encounters

England’s record against Iceland is certainly a mixed bag, as we’ve only played them four times at senior level in the past and enjoyed two wins, a draw and a defeat.

Of course, our last meeting was in September when we edged victory in Reykjavik thanks to Raheem Sterling’s late penalty to get our Nations League campaign off to a winning start.

The last game before that is one which will go down in Iceland’s history as one of their greatest results to date, after a heroic performance at EURO 2016 saw them knock out the Three Lions in Nice, France.

That game is over four years ago now, and plenty has changed for both nations in that time. England’s team has a largely different look and feel to it both on and off the pitch while Iceland are now considered one of the regular challengers for qualification in the UEFA region as opposed to the plucky underdogs tag they took on in France.

It had all started so positively in 2016 too, when Wayne Rooney put England ahead from the spot, but a quickfire response from Iceland saw two goals in 12 minutes from Ragnar Sigurdsson and Kolbeinn Sigthorsson to seal a historic win.

Our other clash with Iceland came back in 2004 when they were the visitors to the City of Manchester Stadium as England prepared for that summer’s UEFA EURO 2004 Finals in Portugal.

Rooney and Darius Vassell grabbed two goals each with Frank Lampard and Wayne Bridge adding the others, and you can watch highlights of that game above.

The first game between the two teams came back in 1982 when the nations played a friendly at the same venue in Reykjavik where they will once again meet in 2020.

It ended 1-1 on that occasion, with Paul Goddard scoring a second-half equaliser to cancel out Arnor Gudjohnsen’s opening goal.

UEFA Nations League head-to-head


First-half goals from Declan Rice and Mason Mount and a second-half brace from Phil Foden after the break seal the win

England ensured they ended 2020 on a high with a convincing 4-0 victory over ten-man Iceland in the UEFA Nations League.

Two goals in the space of four first-half minutes from best mates Declan Rice and Mason Mount established a comfortable cushion for the Three Lions, who could have had more during a dominant opening 45 minutes.

And a late brace from the impressive Phil Foden added further gloss to the scoreline at Wembley as England proved too strong for an Iceland side who played the final 36 minutes a man light after Mar Saevarsson was sent off for two bookable offences.

Gareth Southgate made three changes to the side beaten in Belgium on Sunday and saw his team dominate possession in the opening stages.

The hosts were forced to be patient against an organised Iceland outfit but broke the deadlock through Rice, who glanced home his first international goal from Foden’s tempting free-kick in the 20th minute.

Bukayo Saka was denied by a smart save as England immediately went in search of a second, which arrived shortly afterwards with Saka again heavily involved.

The Arsenal man’s cross narrowly evaded Harry Kane but when the ball rebounded off an Iceland defender, Mount pounced on the loose ball in the area and found the bottom corner with a neat finish.

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Southgate’s side showed no let up for the remainder of the half and Foden was next to go close, seeing his shot well saved by Ogmundur Kristinsson after a fine run and pass from Harry Maguire.

Foden, making his first England start at Wembley, continued to look lively and fired in a fizzing low effort which was kept out by Kristinsson’s fingertips before Kane came close twice in as many minutes towards the end of the first period, narrowly missing the target on both occasions.

The hosts started the second half as they had ended the first, controlling possession in the Iceland half, and the visitors’ task became more difficult when Saevarsson, already on a caution, received his second yellow for pulling back Saka on the edge of the area.

Kari Arnason spurned a presentable opportunity on the hour mark as Iceland looked to halve the deficit, heading a corner wide having found space in the box, but that was a rare moment of concern for England in a half that remained largely one-way traffic.

Kane and Foden each saw shots blocked before the Manchester City star netted the third goal which England’s dominance merited in the 80th minute.

Substitute Jadon Sancho was integral in the build-up, exchanging passes with Saka before squaring for Foden to sweep a precise finish into the bottom corner and give Kristinsson no chance.

He doubled his tally in style four minutes later, collecting possession 25 yards out and firing a left-footed effort past the goalkeeper.

Maguire saw a long-range effort of his own saved and Saka headed an inviting Foden cross wide as England continued to press but the visitors avoided further punishment.

Three points for the Three Lions wrapped up a third-placed finish in Group A2, behind Denmark on a head-to-head basis after both sides collected ten points from six matches.

England (3-4-3): 1 Jordan Pickford (Everton); 2 Kyle Walker (Manchester City), 4 Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur), 5 Harry Maguire (Manchester United; 3 Kieran Tripper (Atletico Madrid), 7 Mason Mount (Chelsea), 8 Declan Rice (West Ham United), 20 Bukayo Saka (Arsenal); 19 Phil Foden (Manchester City), 9 Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) (c), 16 Jack Grealish (Aston Villa)

Substitutes: 12 Tyrone Mings (Aston Villa) for Walker 64’, 14 Harry Winks (Tottenham Hotspur) for Mount 64’, 11 Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund) for Grealish 76’, 21 Tammy Abraham (Chelsea) for Kane 76’, 17 Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal) for Tripper 85’

Substitutes not used: 6 Michael Keane (Everton), 13 Nick Pope (Burnley), 15 Ben Chilwell (Chelsea), 18 Dominic Calvert-Lewin (Everton), 22 Dean Henderson (Manchester United), 23 Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund)

Euro 2020: Five talking points ahead of England’s clash with Germany

By Mark Mann-Bryans, PA

England face Germany in an eye-catching Euro 2020 last-16 clash at Wembley on Tuesday night.

In a repeat of the Euro 96 semi-final, Gareth Southgate will be hoping to lead his country into the quarter-finals.

Here, the PA news agency looks at some of the main talking points ahead of the fixture.

Slice of revenge for Southgate

The England manager missed the deciding penalty 25 years ago as the hosts crashed out to Germany in a semi-final shoot-out.

While he may have landed a pizza advert on the back of the miss, it remained his abiding England moment during his playing career.

Southgate has spoken about the moment many times since becoming England boss and even showed his current crop a video of the miss on the eve of the Euros — now he will be hoping victory on Tuesday night will finally give him closure.


England played with a back four in their three Group D matches, with John Stones the only defender to start all three.

Southgate used a three-man defence to take England to the World Cup semi-finals in 2018 and has reverted back on occasion when coming up against the bigger nations.

He could again go down that route on Tuesday night, especially as Germany now set up in a similar fashion.

Low point for Germany

Joachim Low has been in charge of Germany since 2006 and led them to the World Cup in 2010.

A group-stage exit in Russia two years ago, however, saw him come under increased scrutiny, and it was decided before Euro 2020 that he would be replaced by Hansi Flick.

Low, 61, will want to leave on a high and not crash out to a rival such as England and so — like Southgate — has plenty riding on the evening.

Will Kane be able to end drought?

England captain Harry Kane boasts a fine goalscoring record for England but has drawn a blank so far during the Euros.

The Tottenham striker has struggled to get involved in any of the three games so far, but Southgate insists he is the most important member of his squad.

Kane will want to break his duck sooner rather than later as he looks to add to the 34 goals he has scored in his previous 57 appearances, and he could pick no better time to do it than Tuesday night.

It’s a Knockout

England go into Tuesday’s game having not won a knockout game at a European Championship since beating Spain on penalties in the quarter-final at Euro 96.

Southgate himself admits that is an “incredible record” but has backed his young squad to address that, with the previous results an “irrelevance” at this stage.

Germany, meanwhile, have won the tournament on three separate occasions and have also lost three finals.

England vs Croatia: Talking points ahead of Three Lions’ Euro 2020 opener

The Three Lions will be looking for revenge at Wembley after being beaten in the 2018 World Cup semi-final by Sunday’s opponents.

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England open their European Championship campaign with a Group D clash against Croatia at Wembley on Sunday.

The Three Lions will be looking for revenge after being beaten in the 2018 World Cup semi-final by Croatia.

Ahead of the game, we take a look at some of the key talking points.

Past meetings

The aforementioned defeat in Moscow three years ago will still be a sore memory for much of the England squad.

Kieran Trippier’s early free-kick had Gareth Southgate’s side ahead only for Ivan Perisic to equalise and Mario Mandzukic to send Croatia through to the final.

Since then, the teams have clashed in the Nations League – a 0-0 draw behind closed doors in Rijeka followed up by Jesse Lingard and Harry Kane scoring late goals in a 2-1 Wembley win to send England into the inaugural finals.

Jeers for the knee?

The mixed reaction to England players taking the knee before their last two fixtures has made front- and back-page headlines.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for supporters not to jeer the anti-racism gesture ahead of Sunday’s game.

That plea is likely to fall on deaf ears, although Southgate has said his players will continue to defy the boos to make the stance.

Shape of things to come

Southgate played a back four in both warm-up wins over Austria and Romania but has been known to switch to a three-man defence against stronger opposition.

The run to the final four in Russia was also built on a central defensive trio and it remains to be seen how Southgate will deploy his troops against Croatia.

The fitness of Harry Maguire may figure into Southgate’s thinking, with the Manchester United captain back in training following an ankle injury.

Forward thinking

The way Southgate lines up his defence will have an impact on which attacking talent he can call upon.

While captain Harry Kane is a guaranteed starter, behind him England are blessed with some fine options.

The likes of Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling, Jadon Sancho, Bukayo Saka, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish are all in contention to start – but a handful are destined to be disappointed.

Hey Jude

There are also selection headaches in Southgate’s midfield, with Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson having played just 45 minutes of football since February.

Declan Rice is expected to start with Kalvin Phillips also in contention – but the form of 17-year-old Jude Bellingham will not have been overlooked by the England coaching staff.

The Borussia Dortmund teenager enjoyed a fine season in Germany and was named the Bundesliga’s newcomer of the year and Southgate would be making something of a statement by selecting the former Birmingham man.








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