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Draw against Scotland shows England’s shortcomings
12 June 2017, 10:06
Draw against Scotland shows England’s shortcomings
katatonia82 / Shutterstock.com

England needed a stoppage-time equaliser from captain Harry Kane to rescue a 2-2 draw against neighbours Scotland in World Cup qualifying on Saturday evening.

In truth, England struggled in the game against a spirited, but technically lacking Scottish team. The electric atmosphere in Hampden Park generated by the home fans really did a lot to help their team.

However, England underperformed and the home side exposed the Three Lions shortcomings. Despite likes of Harry Kane and Dele Alli featuring, Gareth Southgate’s side really struggled to look a threat until the last 20 minutes of the clash.

The Three Lions attacking play looked lacklustre at times in Glasgow, influenced perhaps by the timing of the game.

England lined up with two defensive minded players in the centre of midfield in Eric Dier and Jake Livermore. The fact that West Brom star Livermore started in the middle of the park displayed the dearth of options that Southgate had in his position.

England lacked a creative spark in the game. Some have criticised England boss Southgate for not picking Everton attacking midfielder Ross Barkley in his squad, but the playmaker had finished the Premier League campaign in a poor manner.

The Three Lions are still unbeaten in 35 World Cup and European Championship qualifiers. However, England boss Southgate has a lot to sort out, as they tend to be flat-track bullies in qualifiers, before then struggling to make an impact at major tournament finals.

The Three Lions are no doubt still favourites to win Group F. However, the game against Scotland produced more questions than answers for England boss Gareth Southgate. If England are to make an impact at Russia 2018 next year, they will need to find solutions to problems that have been all too common in England sides in recent years.

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OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Manchester City 72 27 23 3 1 79 20 59
2. Manchester United 56 27 17 5 5 51 19 32
3. Liverpool FC 54 27 15 9 3 61 31 30
4. Chelsea FC 53 27 16 5 6 49 23 26
5. Tottenham 52 27 15 7 5 52 24 28
6. Arsenal 45 27 13 6 8 51 36 15
7. Burnley FC 36 27 9 9 9 21 24 -3
8. Leicester City 35 27 9 8 10 39 40 -1
9. Everton FC 34 27 9 7 11 32 46 -14
10. Bournemouth 31 27 8 7 12 31 41 -10
11. Watford FC 30 27 8 6 13 37 47 -10
12. West Ham 30 27 7 9 11 34 46 -12
13. Newcastle Utd 28 27 7 7 13 25 36 -11
14. Brighton 28 27 6 10 11 22 36 -14
15. Crystal Palace 27 27 6 9 12 25 42 -17
16. Swansea City 27 27 7 6 14 20 37 -17
17. Huddersfield 27 27 7 6 14 23 47 -24
18. Southampton 26 27 5 11 11 28 40 -12
19. Stoke City 25 27 6 7 14 27 53 -26
20. West Bromwich 20 27 3 11 13 21 40 -19

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