Gareth Southgate urges his side to take the game to Spain

15 October, 2018, 00:40 | Author: Austin Daniel
  • Croatia and England draw 0-0 in Nations League tie

England played out a largely uneventful stalemate with Croatia behind closed doors in Rijeka to earn the first point of their Uefa Nations League campaign - but manager Gareth Southgate felt they "should have won".

While England are looking to build on their breakthrough run to the World Cup semi-finals under Gareth Southgate, Spain have begun a process of renewal, after crashing out at the hands of Russian Federation in the last 16.

Eric Dier and Harry Kane hit the woodwork on a night when Marcus Rashford wasted two great chances, meaning the opportunity to exact World Cup revenge went begging as the Group A4 encounter ended goalless on a odd night for all involved. "Harry Kane? We are going to try and keep his scoring drought as that would be a very good sign for us". He can help us get better and I am excited for Liverpool and England for him to get back playing football and to show everyone what he is capable of.

Southgate's side took the lead through Marcus Rashford but Spain controlled the game throughout and eventually eased to victory.

Kane is a natural goalscorer that may have seen his overall form and impact on games vary in recent months, but ultimately he will continue to get in the right areas to score. "We can't defend for 90 minutes". "But good teams adapt".

The football authorities would be well advised to remember the game "without fans is nothing". We will change a few players for the upcoming friendly against Jordan.

England avoided defeat this time, but any comparisons between the two occasions are utterly futile.

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First Perisic saw a low drive well stopped by Pickford, and then Kane met a Henderson free kick with a header that came back off the bar before Perisic cleared.

England's Jadon Sancho, Borussia Dortmund's exciting 18-year old winger, produced a darting run late on after coming off the bench to replace Raheem Sterling and make his worldwide debut before the match fizzled out in the final few minutes.

It was a night when definitive judgements were impossible - but there are plus points Southgate can take away.

Dejan Lovren was booked for a clumsy tackle on Sterling as the first half petered out, but a much brighter start to the second half nearly brought a goal for either side.

It certainly promises to be a fascinating encounter as Spain look to maintain their strong start to the UEFA Nations League against England.

Penalty claims were rejected as Ross Barkley, making his first England appearance in 868 days, went down in the box - and Stones' frustration at that decision resulted in a foul that brought a booking and suspension.



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