England’s nation al football team finally got back to winning ways after 3 successive defeats as they eventually managed to Over come Switzerland 1-0 at the King Power Stadium last night. Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford proving the difference with his second half volley as England in a game that was played in a somewhat subdued atmosphere and at times very scrappy.
England Manager had announced in advance it would be different side that to the one that played against Spain at the Weekend, some players were unavailable due to injury while others were ‘rested’, however, in total he named nine changes and for the majority of the game they looked like a side that had rarely played together.
From the start, England allowed the Swizz to dominate and should have took an early lead through Liverpool’s summer recruit Xherdan Shaqiri, his effort hitting the post after stand in Keeper Jack Butland’s poor clearance but defender James Tarkowski under pressure. For the rest of the half the whole team looked out of sorts allowing Switzerland to have 65% of the procession, while Stoke City’s keeper Butland who is known for his shot stopping abilities looked less than confident with the ball at his feet in a game he would have wanted to show he can challenge Jordan Pickford as first choice keeper.
After the game, Man of the match Danny Rose explained how the team as a collective weren’t happy with their first 45 minutes performance described the first half as ‘embarrassing’ while admitting players had words with each other in the changing room.
This seemed to work as they looked more like a team from the start of the second half, communication was there and the willingness to work for each other which lead to opportunities to apply pressure on the Swizz which just hadn’t been visible in the first half.
One of these opportunities fell to Rashford in the 54th minute, who found himself free at the back post and able to finish off Kyle Walkers well placed cross back into the box after the visitors had failed to effectively clear a corner.
From here England continued to grow in confidence, although not being able to add to their solitary goal, they at times played some good football and the players will all benefit from the time on the pitch at this level.
In the past two games Gareth Southgate’s side have shown they can’t not sit on their World cup achievements and think thy are one of the World’s best! Were we know have a squad capable of competing against the top footballing nations we still have plenty of work ahead of us before we can truly say we are part of that group. However, Gareth Southgate has a young side full off potential with time on its side and an eagerness to achieve and the lessons of the past four days will only add to that drive as this squad continues to progress.