Everything you need to know about England before Euro 2024
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Everything you need to know about England before Euro 2024

02/06/24 17:13

The summer of football is here, and in less than two weeks the European Championships kick off. Out of the 24 teams, England are one of the favourites to win the whole thing after making the final three years ago. Here is a list of everything you need to know before the Three Lions get underway.

Provisional Team

Gareth Southgate has announced his provisional squad for the tournament, but will have to cut it down before the first ball is kicked. Obviously England’s all-time top scorer Harry Kane will be leading the line, despite picking up an injury at the end of the Bundesliga season. Other big names include Jude Bellingham, Declan Rice and Phil Foden, all of whom have had incredible seasons with their respective clubs.

Marcus Rashford was left out by Gareth Southgate who said that he wanted to include players who are on form and have performed well this season. Another player left out is Dominic Solanke, who has scored 19 goals in the Premier League this season for Bournemouth. Despite netting more times than Mohamed Salah and Son Heung-Min, Solanke did not do enough to impress Southgate, who selected Ivan Toney, who has four goals this season. Jordan Henderson, Fikayo Tomori and Kalvin Phillips have all missed out too.

Group and Schedule

England are in Group C alongside Denmark, Serbia and Slovenia. Despite having a history of underperforming in major tournaments, the Three Lions should qualify from this group with ease. England open their campaign on 16th June at 8pm against Serbia before facing Denmark on 20th June at 5pm and Slovenia on 25th June at 8pm. The first two group stage games will be on BBC1 with the final game on ITV1.

Players to Watch

There are quite a few players who could be included in this section. The first name on everyone’s lips this season has been Champions League winner, Bellingham, as his first year in Spain has been incredible. He has made a habit of scoring important late goals for Real Madrid which transferred to his England appearances, when he scored a 95th minute equaliser in a friendly game against Belgium in March.

Harry Kane is another player who is set to have a good tournament. The striker scored 36 goals in his debut season in Germany and is England’s all-time top scorer. Having missed out on the Bundesliga and the DFB-Pokal to Bayer Leverkusen, Kane will be looking to win the Euros for his first major trophy.

How did they fare at Euro 2020

I think everyone knows that England reached the final of Euro 2020, only to lose on penalties to Italy. The Three Lions won their group by scoring only two goals, both from Raheem Sterling, with two wins and a 0-0 draw. They then went on to beat Germany and Ukraine without conceding to set up a Semi-Final with Denmark. Despite falling behind, England won in extra-time, setting up a final with Italy. Luke Shaw opened the scoring early, but Italy equalised in the second half, sending the game to extra-time and then to penalties, where England eventually lost.

How far will England go this time?

There are high levels of optimism around Football Park about England’s chances this year but I must say that I do not share this. I expect the Three Lions to breeze through their group due to the sheer quality that they have compared with the opposition and they should be able to get through the Round of 16 too.

Should the Group Stage and the early knockout games go as expected, the Three Lions will meet France in the Semi-Final, and that is a game that I just don’t see England progressing from. England and France met at the World Cup in 2022, and Les Bleus progressed in that tournament, so I can see something similar happening here. Gareth Southgate’s team often does well against teams like Denmark and Serbia, who are in England’s group, but when they are faced with a real challenge, they fall apart.

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Jake Martin

Writer

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