Home FEATURES The Three Lions – The Sleeping Giant called the England National Team

The Three Lions – The Sleeping Giant called the England National Team

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Ever since Sir Bobby Charlton won England it’s solitary World Cup in 1966, the world lays in wait for supremely talented English squads to repeat the feat. The golden era for English football showcasing the midfield of Paul Scholes, Steven Gerrard, and Frank Lampard was expected to achieve great things. They were accompanied by star strikers Michael Owen, David Beckham, and Wayne Rooney and world-class defenders Rio Ferdinand, John Terry, Gary Neville, and Ashley Cole. This dream team however was largely unsuccessful. They failed to win anything.

kane england
Image Source: Twitter.com

England squads over the years have created an air of underachievement. The squad has always seemed to be lesser than the sum of its parts. The 2018 World Cup was another display in bottling by the Three Lions. Having reached the semi-final, Gareth Southgate and his men had their opportunity to finally make the finals of the Fifa World Cup. After taking the lead against Croatia, they once again failed to hold on and were beaten by a Mario Mandzukic goal in extra time.

The squad England now has is studded with the perfect blend of experienced and upcoming stars. Captain Harry Kane has developed into one of the world’s best strikers at only 27 years of age. He already has a world cup golden boot to his name having scored 6 goals at the 2018 Russia World Cup.

Also Read: 5 years of Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool FC

Jadon Sancho is fast becoming one of the world’s brightest prospects. He is tearing the Bundesliga apart with Borrusia Dortmund. Marcus Rashford though only 22 years old is already a seasoned international having made his National Team debut at just 18 years. He already has the experience of the Euros and a World Cup under his belt. Raheem Sterling is another one of England’s elite attacking options. His pace and strength prove valuable to any team he plays for.

To add to this attacking potential, the upsurge of Dominic Calvert-Lewin and revival of Danny Ings has brought a welcome headache to Gareth Southgate’s selection process. As if that was not enough, the emergence of Mason Greenwood and Phil Foden as two of the most promising youngsters in world football makes it almost impossible to pick a starting line up. England has 8 world-class players competing for three spots in the front line of the national attack.

The midfield has also seen a resurgence in quality. Veteran Jordan Henderson is now accompanied by Jack Grealish, Kalvin Philips, Harry Winks, James Ward-Prowse, James Maddison, Mason Mount, and Declan Rice. There is a great balance between creative and defensive midfielders. There is also the perfect blend of vision and hard work in this England midfield.

trent england
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In defense England boasts the best right back in the world. Trent Alexander Arnold has made that title his own without debate through two seasons of exceptional displays. He is backed up by Kyle Walker, Kieran Trippier, Tariq Lamptey, Reece James, and Aaron Wan Bissaka. At left-back, they have Ben Chilwell who had an impressive season with Leicester before making his 50 million pounds move to Chelsea this summer.

England even has three fantastic options for the Goalkeeper position. Jordan Pickford has been inconsistent and mistake-prone for over a year now. But that is no cause for concern as Nick Pope and Dean Henderson have both been fantastic. They were arguably the two best goalkeepers in the league last season.

The only position where England looks vulnerable is the Central defense. Harry Maguire has been largely unconvincing after a string of poor performances. Joe Gomez has shown little quality and Michael Keane and Eric Dier are simply not top quality players. Connor Coady has shown early promise. However, he has a fair way to go before establishing himself in this talented young side.

In spite of all the quality this team possesses, Southgate has failed to extract the most from his players. His formation of fielding 3 center backs has often baffled fans. With so much attacking talent at his disposal one would expect him to field more attackers. His conservative approach to games has infuriated fans and pundits alike. With firepower like this England should be ripping apart most of the world’s defenses but instead, they have struggled to find a steady flow of goals.

If any coach or manager can tap into the devastating attacking potential that England has while securing a steady defense, the results could be very promising. England surely has talent. All that remains to be seen is if that talent can be converted into trophies. Will this new golden generation finally bring glory back to this starving nation or will their predicaments under pressure rear it’s ugly head again?! Only time will tell.

 

 

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