England have won both their pre-EURO friendlies and now they kick off their campaign by taking on Croatia in their first Group Stage match. And in this piece, we take a look at the England team news vs Croatia.
The Three Lions are undefeated in 32 of their last 34 matches in the Euros and have also managed to keep a clean sheet in their last 3 matches in the same competition. Croatia, on the other hand, are undefeated in their last 6 matches in the Euro but Luka Modric’s men have not had much success vs England in this tournament lately.
England have one of the strongest squads in recent times but that will just put added pressure on Gareth Southgate to select the best starting line-up on Sunday. The manager is a bit worried about one or two injured players but thankfully he has adequate backup in those areas so he will not have to put in fillers across the pitch.
The Englishman are in Group D and it’s one of the toughest in the tournament. After the Croatia game they will have to face Scotland and then the Czech Republic so moving into the knockout stages will not be an easy task for Gareth Southgate.
England team news vs Croatia:
The first big debate in the England team news vs Croatia will be with the injury to Harry Maguire. The defender picked up an injury while playing for Manchester United and it looks like he is not going to be fit to face Croatia this Sunday.
Maguire is an integral part of the squad but if he is not ready then Mings is likely to come into central defence alongside John Stones.
Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell will be battling it out for the left-back role but since this is the first game of the tournament, there’s no guarantee who will start. We will put our money on the Man United man.
Trent-Alexander Arnold misses out with an injury so purely based on form, Reece James should come into the right full-back role.
The Three Lions boss should go with two defensive midfielders in his starting line-up, one of whom is going to be Declan Rice. Jordan Henderson has just returned from injury so it will be interesting to see if the manager selects him or not.
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Mason Mount comes into this tournament at the back of a Champions League final win so it will not be a total surprise if the manager trusts the youngster to play in the No 10 role on Sunday.
The other big discussion in the England team news vs Croatia will be which three attackers are going to start on Sunday. Jack Grealish, Marcus Rashford, Phil Foden and Raheem Sterling are all contenders for the left winger’s role and we feel the Villa man will get the nod on Sunday.
Harry Kane is the undisputed centre-forward for England and Dominic Calvert-Lewin will only come in as a substitute in the second half. Jadon Sancho has been a bit subdued for Dortmund during the 2020-21 season but we think he will play down the right flank.
England predicted line-up vs Croatia:
Predicted Starting Line-up: Jordan Pickford; Mings, John Stones, Luke Shaw, Reece James; Declan Rice, Henderson, Mason Mount; Harry Kane, Jack Grealish, Jadon Sancho.
Stats courtesy Whoscored.