England vs Montenegro Euro 2020 Qualifiers Preview
England’s road to Euro 2020 continues this week with Gareth Southgate knowing a win over Montenegro will be more than enough to end any uncertainty about his side’s participation at next year’s tournament.
With England only needing a point to qualify, will Southgate go for broke at Wembley?
Read on for our preview of England vs Montenegro.
Euro 2020 Qualifiers Preview: England face off against Montenegro
England vs Montenegro – head-to-head meetings
England wins – 2
Draws – 3
Montenegro wins – 0
Last Meeting: Montenegro 1-5 England, March 2019
Montenegro have traditionally been a thorn in England’s side since their first meeting in 2010, with England failing to win on both of their previous trips to Podgorica ending in draws.
That meant Gareth Southgate’s side naturally headed into their Euro 2020 qualifier with some caution back in March – and initially it showed. Montenegro made life difficult for England in the early stages, taking the lead on 17 minutes. In a game marred by controversy off the pitch, the Three Lions eventually battled back to record a resounding 5-1 win as Michael Keane headed home his first international goal and Ross Barkley bagged a brace.
England vs Montenegro – the pre-match brief
While more talented Montenegrin sides have managed to make life difficult for England in previous qualifying tournament, this current generation look unlikely to cause too much concern for the Three Lions after a largely forgettable campaign where they have scored just three goals and picked up three points. They can still just about avoid the wooden spoon with Bulgaria also bombing in Group B.
Despite a testing week off the field, England will be confident their class will eventually tell. A noticeable lacklustre performance in Prague resulted in England tasting defeat in a qualifier for the first time in 10 years in the last round of qualifiers. However, their form at Wembley is a different story, having scored at least four in all of their home Euro 2020 qualifiers to date. Thanks to the fixture list throwing up a clash between second and third-placed Czech Republic and Kosovo in the final round of games, a point will do it on Wednesday night.
Southgate has shuffled the pack by dropping Michael Keane as he looks to shore up a defence that has looked uncharacteristically leaky since the summer. Marcus Rashford’s recent resurgence in form could also give the Three Lions boss a selection dilemma up front.
Verdict: England 3-0 Montenegro
Image sources: PA Images
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