England v Scotland Preview

The England-Scotland rivalry continues as they face each other at Euro 2021

Build Up

Football’s oldest international fixture will be re-ignited on Friday, as England and Scotland meet for the 115th time. This fixture is always a big game, due to the old rivalry. But, of course, the two teams meeting at a major competition makes it even more special.

England got off to a winning start on Sunday by beating Croatia 1-0, whereas Scotland suffered a loss in their opener against Czech Republic. A win for England should pretty much guarantee progress to the knockout rounds whereas Scotland’s hopes of qualification will be boosted by picking up at least one point in this game. Although Scotland did lose their first match, they showed plenty of ambition and created many chances. But it was their lack of clinical finishing which let them down. If they are to come away with anything at Wembley, they must be able to put away big chances, especially as these chances will be harder to come by against a typically resolute English defence.

Despite England being favourites, Scotland will make it tough for them. The Three Lions will need to create more chances than they did against Croatia, and a sharper Harry Kane, will make the job at Wembley easier for them. They will, however, have to be wary of the counter-attacking threat of the Scottish, especially with Andy Robertson’s pace on the left flank.

Key Details

Fixture: England vs Scotland
Date: 18/06/2021
KO Time: 20:00
Competition: Euro 2020
Stadium: Wembley Stadium
Managers: Gareth Southgate (ENG) and Steve Clarke (SCO)
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz

Team News

Earlier this week, Manchester United keeper Dean Henderson had to withdraw from the England squad, due to a hip injury. Sheffield United keeper, Aaron Ramsdale replaced him and will most likely be England’s third choice keeper, behind Pickford and Johnstone. Harry Maguire claims to be fit to face Scotland, but whether he will be drafted into the starting line-up will be down to Southgate. Jordan Henderson still remains doubtful, but with the solid performances of Rice and Phillips against Croatia, it is most likely that he won’t start.

Kieran Tierney missed out in facing Czech Republic, a huge loss for the Scots. Fortunately for Scotland, the Arsenal defender said that it is ‘touch and go’ whether or not he starts at Wembley and that the decision will be made closer to the fixture.

Interesting Facts on the Rivalry

  • The England-Scotland footballing rivalry has been played out 114 times, with England winning 48, Scotland winning 41 and 25 draws (11 v 11).
  • England and Scotland played the first international football match in history. They met in Glasgow, on the 30th of November 1872 – it finished goalless.
  • The last time these two teams played at the European Championships was also at Wembley. England came out on top, winning 2-0.
  • The two teams used to play each other every year, from 1884 until 1984, in what was known as the British Home Championships

Predicted Line-ups

England: Pickford, Shaw, Mings, Stones, Trippier, Rice, Phillips, Mount, Sterling, Kane, Foden (4-3-3)

Scotland: Marshall, Tierney, Hanley, Hendry, Robertson, Armstrong, McTominay, McGinn, Forrest, Dykes, Adams (3-5-2)

Predicted Score

This is unlikely to be a comfortable game for England. Scotland will be highly aware of the significance of this rivalry and they will certainly put up a strong contest. However they are in better form and they do have more quality around the pitch. Southgate’s game-management against Croatia was key to their win, and I expect a similar manner of performance here. I’m predicting a 2-0 win to England.

Author: Joel Abraham

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