England fans celebrate goals and final whistle as they beat Germany 2-0
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England are dreaming of Euro 2020 glory in the wake of their 2-0 victory over Germany on Tuesday night. Gareth Southgate’s side went into the match looking to make the quarter-finals of the competition. And they did just that, producing a fine display at Wembley and putting their old rivals to the sword.
England went into the match against Germany looking for revenge.
They had, after all, lost 4-1 to Joachim Low’s side in bitterly controversial circumstances at the World Cup in South Africa 11 years ago.
But England were never in danger against Germany and won 2-0 courtesy of goals from Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane.
Sterling opened the scoring in the 75th minute, coolly tapping in from close range after good work from Luke Shaw.
And Harry Kane then doubled the Three Lions’ lead with four minutes to go, heading home after a pinpoint cross from Jack Grealish.
Express Sport will now take a look at three great decisions Southgate made on the day as England took a giant step closer to ending 55 years of hurt.
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A back three
Before the game, it was revealed England would be lining up with a back three.
And though that defensive gamble could have backfired, the system was vital when it came to getting the better of their opponents.
England were solid throughout, only being breached once when Thomas Muller sliced his shot wide with Germany chasing an equaliser at the time.
Harry Maguire looks back to his best, particularly with Kyle Walker and John Stones alongside him.
And Kieran Trippier and Shaw both impressed as wing backs, with the latter providing the assist for Sterling’s strike.
England have so many offensive players but it’s the defensive ones, instead, who are leading their charge for glory. Four games, zero goals conceded.
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Sticking with Kane
The Three Lions had seen Kane struggle prior to the Germany match, putting in flat displays against the likes of Croatia, Scotland and Czech Republic.
Therefore, Southgate could have been forgiven for contemplating whether to take his skipper out of the firing line.
But the 50-year-old was never realistically going to do that and Kane, over the course of 90 minutes, rewarded his manager’s faith.
The Tottenham star was, at times, on the fringes of the action.
But his goal in the closing stages was a massive relief to everybody inside Wembley, including the 27-year-old himself.
And England will now be hoping he can go on a scoring spree, with Ukraine up next on Saturday evening.
Using subs wisely
Southgate has been reluctant to make substitutions at the Euros so far, instead choosing to back the players already on the pitch.
But he certainly got them right against Germany, with the introduction of Grealish a masterstroke.
Grealish is a firm fans favourite and the Aston Villa star showed exactly why Manchester City are ready to pay £100million for him after coming off the bench.
The playmaker was a thorn in Germany’s side, looking a threat from the moment he stepped out onto the pitch.
And grabbing the assist for Kane’s goal was proof of his qualities.
Whether Grealish has done enough to earn a starting spot against Ukraine on Saturday night, however, is something only time will tell.
England were immense – Southgate
Speaking after the game, England boss Southgate hailed his side as ‘immense.’
“The players were immense, right the way through the team,” said the 50-year-old.
“The fans in the stadium were also incredible.
“I’ve been in here with a full house and not heard it near the levels heard today, but the energy was incredible in the stadium. To be able to send them home feeling as they do tonight… and you can’t beat a bit of ‘Sweet Caroline’, that’s a belter really!
“For those people, after such a difficult year at home, to have that enjoyment we’ve given them today was very special.
“It didn’t need me to say it, but when we got in the dressing room we were talking about Saturday already. Today’s been an immense performance but at a cost emotionally and physically. We need to make sure we recover well.”
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