Connect with us


England’s resilience keeps them on course for Euro 2024 glory

Saka’s goal, as with Bellingham’s against Slovakia, was England’s first shot on target, evidence of the lack of creation, even with a more solid structure.

England deserve their due for a refusal to buckle in the face of adversity, which has rescued them twice, first against Slovakia and now Switzerland. The fact that it actually takes adversity to jolt them into life is less praiseworthy, a fault that applies to Southgate as well as his players.

England had started to drift before Embolo put Switzerland ahead, Southgate instantly sending on Luke Shaw for his first action in five months, plus Palmer and Eberechi Eze, with Kieran Trippier, Ezri Konsa and Kobbie Mainoo the three men replaced. It was reactive management prompted by falling behind.

Southgate could say he was holding his nerve but it is hardly the sign of a considered gameplan to throw three players on the moment you have to score.

England have been making an art of living dangerously and getting away with it. The talented Dutch may not be as generous as Slovakia and Switzerland. But Southgate’s side are not easily beaten – and their confidence will be fuelled by the belief there is so much more to come from them if they can get it right.

Southgate will be assured by the composed performance of Aston Villa defender Ezri Konsa as deputy for suspended Marc Guehi, while 19-year-old Mainoo nerveless, making another excellent contribution before he was substituted.

Harry Kane is a concern, however, looking out on his feet for much of the game, and barely able to raise a gallop or a jump by the time he was substituted. He will be vital against the Netherlands so Southgate will hope the captain can regain his drive and energy.

As for Southgate himself, he now prepares for another semi-final as England – despite everything – stand one game away from the Euro 2024 final in Berlin on 14 July.

Source link

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *