England can silence critics when it faces Slovenia at Euro 2024 to finish group stage

Mon, Jun 24, 2024
Soccer News (AP)

England can silence critics when it faces Slovenia at Euro 2024 to finish group stage

COLOGNE, Germany (AP) - England plays Slovenia in its final Group C game at Euro 2024 on Tuesday. Negativity has surrounded Gareth Southgate's team following its unconvincing 1-1 draw with Denmark, but England still tops the group on four points and a draw will be enough to guarantee it advances to the round of 16. Kickoff is at 9 p.m. local (1900 GMT) in Cologne. Here's what to know about the match:

Match facts

- England's 1-1 draw with Denmark has sparked heavy criticism of the team, despite it topping Group C and being likely to progress even if it loses to Slovenia. While England could still finish third, four points has always been enough to advance to the knockout phase of the Euros as one of the best third-placed teams.

- England beat Serbia 1-0 in its opening game.

- Winning the group would mean England faces one of the best third-placed teams from Group D, E or F.

- Slovenia - on two points - goes into the game knowing it could finish top or bottom of the group, depending on results.

- Slovenia has drawn against Denmark and Serbia in its other games in Group C.

Team news

- All 26 players in England's squad were due to train on Monday, with speculation Luke Shaw could play for the first time at these Euros, having missed the end of the season with injury.

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- Southgate may decide to make a change in midfield after experimenting with defender Trent Alexander-Arnold in a holding role. Conor Gallagher could partner Declan Rice instead.

By the numbers

- Harry Kane scored a record-extending 64th goal for England in the game against Denmark.

- Slovenia is playing in only its second Euros and is still waiting for its first win.

What they're saying

- "We are very aware that our performances need to improve, but in terms of points and goals, we're in a very similar situation to the last Euro and we're comfortable with that." - England coach Gareth Southgate.

- "We are now facing the last group game. We turn our thoughts towards England. They are clear favourites, but so were the Danes and the Serbs. So we need to lift our heads and prepare." - Slovenia coach Matjaz Kek.

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James Robson is at https://twitter.com/jamesalanrobson

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AP Euro 2024: https://apnews.com/hub/euro-2024

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