England Cruise to Two Victories and Now Focus on Nations League Final


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It was all a little too easy for England at the weekend, as they cruised past the Czech Republic and Montenegro to get their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign off to the best possible start.

As we have come to expect from manager Gareth Southgate, we saw more promise from the youngsters, with both Declan Rice and Callum Hudson-Odoi impressing with the chance they were given after being called up to the squad.

After those two games, it is time for England to switch their focus back to the Nations League, with the finals taking place in Portugal this June. This gives England another chance to win a piece of silverware after going close at the World Cup during the summer, and while it may not be the most prestigious trophy on offer, it would be a great boost ahead of the Euro 2020 Championships next summer.

England are the 7/4 favourites to lift the Nations League title with 22Bet, ahead of the hosts Portugal who are priced up at 2/1. They avoid each other in the semifinals, with England facing Holland while Portugal take on Switzerland. Many people see the Euro 2020 Championships as a stepping stone for this young England team towards the 2022 World Cup, and if they need it, the Nations League is exactly what they need ahead of 2020.

If there was one criticism of England during the World Cup it was their lack of goals from anyone other than Harry Kane. We are only two games into the Euro 2020 qualifying group, but already we are witnessing Raheem Sterling add clinical finishing to his vast array of talents on show. With him playing off Kane if he keeps scoring the way he does then England don’t need to worry about goals.

Ross Barkley was another to impress in the game against Montenegro, and he found the back of the net twice from midfield. He has been given the freedom to go forward and really drive at defenders with the ball, something he thrived on in that game. The opposition is going to be a lot tougher down the line for England, there is no doubt about that, but with a player like him given the freedom that he has been so far, plenty of goal scoring opportunities are going to come for them, regardless of the opposition.

Players have returned to their clubs now after the international break, one that has been very successful for England. The next time we see them will be in the Nations League semi final against Holland, with hopefully a final to come a few days later. Perhaps one of the only things lacking for England right now is the know-how when it comes to winning, but a win in the Nations League would begin the process of taking that away. This has the potential to be a golden period for England over the coming decade, with a genuine possibility of them winning at least one trophy.

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