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Gareth Southgate picks three-man defence for England’s match against Germany

By June 29, 2021No Comments

England shifted to a three-man defence as Gareth Southgate looked to mastermind a route past Germany in their Euro 2020 last-16 clash at Wembley.

Southgate played four across the back in all three group games but altered systems to match up with Germany as Kieran Trippier came into the side at right wing-back, replacing Jack Grealish – who dropped to the bench.

Bukayo Saka once again started as part of an attack spearheaded by captain Harry Kane, who is yet to score at the finals.

The Three Lions have not won a knockout tie at a European Championship since beating Spain here on penalties in the quarter-final of Euro 96 but will be hoping to address that bad run.

Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell had been self-isolating but the former made the bench having travelled to London independently from the rest of the squad on Monday evening.

For Germany, Joachim Low made three alterations from their 2-2 draw with Hungary as Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan was only fit enough for a place among the substitutes.

Chelsea forward Timo Werner, Leon Goretzka and the experienced Thomas Muller came into the side for visitors.

Thousands of England fans had earlier descended on the capital ahead of the mammoth Euro 2020 last-16 clash with Germany.

Southgate’s men are preparing for the country’s biggest match on home soil since Euro 96, with more than 40,000 supporters heading to Wembley for the big game.

England shirts from the past and present were seen across London and along Olympic Way, where ‘Football’s Coming Home’ filled the air and St George’s flags were carried proudly.

Train and tube stations were a cacophony of hope and expectation, with thousands of spectators setting up camp outside of the ground from midday onwards, unlike the comparatively tame Group D matches at Wembley.

The Three Lions are looking to win just their second ever European Championship knockout game, five years on from the 2-1 humbling at the last-16 stage by minnows Iceland.

Germany have knocked England out of the 1970, 1990 and 2010 World Cup as well as the Euro 96 semi-finals, when current boss Southgate missed the crucial spot-kick in the shoot-out.

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