England’s youngsters shine
England got their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign on to a good start. They played their first two matches of the qualification and they both ended in wins for the Three Lions. Something that will be very pleasing for Southgate is that the youngsters he fielded, played very well. The two most notable ones were Hudson-Odoi who is 18 and Sancho who is 19. Sancho started the first game against Czech Republic which he played very well in and got himself an assist in the 5-0 victory, whereas Hudson-Odoi started the second game and also got himself an assist.
The second game against Montenegro, England had quite a scare when they went 1-0 down. However, England clawed back 13 minutes later through a good ball from Barkley to Kean, who scored his first international goal. Barkley then went from creator to the scorer and put away his first before half time, he then got another one 15 minutes into the second half. Kane got the fourth of the game in the 71st minute and then Sterling scored his fourth goal in his last two international matches when he got the fifth to finish the game at 1-5. Unfortunately, the game was marred by racist abuse from the fans aimed at Sterling and Rose. Since then Uefa has charged Montenegro with racist behaviour.
Southgate will be pleased with how his team have performed and the fact that he was able to give some new faces a chance to play. Declan Rice is another player that made his debut after changing alliances from Ireland to England. Ward-Prowse and Wilson were also given only their second game for England albeit they only came on late as subs and could not have much of an impact. This is still very positive for Southgate, as he has had the opportunity to try out new players, and he still has 6 qualifying games to experiment with other players and formations before h has to make his final squad.