England dominate Wales
England kicked off their latest round of fixtures on Thursday evening, in a friendly meeting with Wales.
The tie, of course, meant little in terms of the result, but it was a great chance for the Three Lions to get one over on their neighbours, whilst also handing some fringe players a chance to impress.
The likes of Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Danny Ings, Conor Coady and Nick Pope were all afforded starts for their country on Thursday, with big-hitters Harry Kane, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford amongst those to have missed out.
Despite deploying a second-string side, though, Gareth Southgate’s men nevertheless managed to come away with a dominant 3-0 win.
Calvert-Lewin, Coady and Ings were all on target, with the latter’s strike a particular highlight.
Highlights: England 3-Wales 0
England to stick with a back-three
It is also worth noting that England deployed a back-three/five against Wales, as they had done in their previous outing, versus Denmark.
This appears to mark a clear tactical shift by Southgate, who, after the 2018 World Cup, lined his side up with a back-four in most matches.
But with the likes of Bukayo Saka, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Conor Coady and Kieran Trippier all seemingly better suited to a back-three, perhaps this now represents England’s best formation.
One man who certainly appears to think so is Gareth Southgate, who recently stated that:
“We feel it suits the personnel that we’ve got very strongly and we think it also gives us strength in depth if we have problems losing players.”
The Telegraph have also reported that England will continue to utilise a three-man defence moving forward, and are planning to use the system at the European Championships next summer:
— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) October 9, 2020
This article was edited by Conor Laird.