- England saw off the game comfortably and recorded three massive points in front of their home fans to start Euro 2020 with a win.
England’s UEFA Euro 2020 campaign began at the Wembley Stadium, as they hosted Croatia in a Group B encounter, EKO HOT BLOG gathered.
The Three Lions won their first game of a European Championships tournament for the first time in their history, as their new, youthful generation produced a spirited showing to record a 1-0 victory.
Gareth Southgate’s team selection ahead of kick-off raised eyebrows, as the England manager opted to start Kieran Trippier as a makeshift left-back despite having Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell in the squad.
Raheem Sterling’s inclusion ahead of the likes of Jack Grealish and Marcus Rashford also divided opinion amongst the Three Lions faithful, with the 26-year-old coming on the back of a quiet season with Manchester City.
Nevertheless, England raced off the blocks and dominated proceedings in the opening exchanges.
Phil Foden came ever so close to breaking the deadlock in the sixth minute, but his shot cannoned off the post in what was a lucky let-off for Croatia.
Zlatko Dalic’s side couldn’t get a grip of the game and conceded a few more chances, but they grew in stature after weathering an early storm from the home side.
Croatia left gaping holes in their backline at times in the first half, but England was unable to make them pay. However, after the interval, Sterling capitalized on one of those chances to break the deadlock for the Three Lions.
Phillips was heavily involved in the build-up and played a brilliant pass into the box for the Manchester City man, who slotted the ball in from close range past the despairing dive of Dominik Livakovic.
Both sides made a raft of substitutions in the last quarter of the game, with Jude Bellingham’s introduction turning out to be a historic moment.
At 17 years and 349 days, the dynamic midfielder became the youngest player in the history of the competition, as he replaced Harry Kane in the closing stages.
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