- Date: Saturday September 9 – 17.00 BST
- Location: Tarczyński Arena, Wroclaw, Poland.
- Teams: Ukraine v England
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England look to extend 100% start against Ukraine
England will be looking to further strengthen their position in the group as they travel to Poland to face Ukraine. After beating both the Ukrainians and Italy back in March, the three Lions enjoyed comprehensive victories over Malta and North Macedonia in June.
England have been hit by the late withdrawals of Jack Grealish and Trent Alexander-Arnold through injury. Grealish was absent from Manchester City’s win against Fulham at the weekend and Alexander-Arnold sustained a hamstring injury during Liverpool’s win over Aston Villa. Southgate has elected not to call any replacements into the squad.
Reece James and Mason Mount both miss out through injury. Tyrone Mings will be missing from the squad after sustaining a serious knee injury on the opening day of the Premier League season. Manchester City’s John Stones has been struggling with a muscle injury since pre-season and is also unavailable. Manchester United defender Luke Shaw is also facing a spell on the sidelines. Shaw, 28, will be out of action for up to two months so will not be involved against Ukraine.
Arsenal’s young striker Eddie Nketiah and Chelsea’s emerging centre-back Levi Colwill have received their first call-ups. Jordan Henderson, who recently departed Liverpool for Saudi Arabian club Al-Ettifaq remains in the squad. Harry Maguire and Kalvin Phillips are both selected despite limited involvement with their clubs in the early weeks of the season. There is no place for James Ward-Prowse, despite an impressive start to the season for West Ham.
Captain Harry Kane has already started scoring for new club Bayern Munich and should be ready to lead his country out at the Tarczyński Arena. Marcus Rashford, Phil Foden and James Maddison are competing to join Kane and Bukayo Saka up front. Jude Bellingham is available after making a positive start to his Real Madrid career and is likely to start in midfield with Declan Rice.
Ukraine have won two of their three qualifying matches so far. They have won three and drawn two in their last six matches, with their only defeat in that period coming against England back in March. They will be looking to narrow the gap on the visitors and to consolidate second position in the group.
Chelsea’s Mykhailo Mudryk’s return to fitness is a boost for Ukraine. Experienced midfielders Ruslan Malinovskyi and Yevhen Konoplyanka have not been included in Serhiy Rebrov’s squad.
England are much more likely to perform to potential these days. Especially in competitive matches. They will travel full of confidence but Ukraine are not to be taken lightly.
Due to the war, Ukraine are playing home matches in Poland, which might mean that they don’t get the full benefit of home advantage. They are more than capable of getting a result against most teams, but all things being equal England should have too much for their hosts and should come away with three points.
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