Southgate’s last-16 opponent warning
England went into their final game against the Czech Republic knowing that a win to top the group would likely give them a tougher opponent in the last 16.
However, Gareth Southgate has warned their prospective opponents that there is much more to come from his side.
“There is more to come from us, definitely. We’re not fluent but we have moments where we are a good side,” said Southgate.
“We are still improving, there’s more to come from us and we will need squad depth because the players have looked tired through games but we have that.
“We said to the players before the game that the pressure was off, we had qualified but there was still something to achieve by winning the Group which was always our target.
“First or second, there was no way of knowing what is the better route and there’s no way of knowing who we will face next but you have to take control of what you can achieve and we wanted to stay at Wembley.”
Wembley was the prize and England earned it. Their opponents will travel and face Southgate and his men on their turf, but who will that be?
England will play Germany
After a drama filled night in Group F England will face Germany.
England’s prospective opponents could have been one of all 4 sides at different points throughout the night.
Portugal’s early goal against France meant they would be playing the World Champions at Wembley.
Then Hungary and France both scored meaning an unlikely pairing with the group’s underdogs.
Even a Germany equaliser was quickly responded to again by Hungary and by this point the game between Portugal and France was levelled at 2-2 thanks to braces from former Real Madrid teammates Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo.
However, a late equaliser from Leon Goretzka broke Hungarian hearts and set up a tantalising tie between the two rivals.
Leon Goretzka looks to have spared #GER‘s blushes…
— The Athletic UK (@TheAthleticUK) June 23, 2021
The last time the pair met was in 2017 when they played out a dull 0-0 draw.
The rhetoric will certainly be of England’s improvement and Germany’s decline since then and England may even go into the game as possible favourites.