FOOTBALL

Spain vs England: Preview

England will continue their search for a first UEFA Nations League win, when they travel to the Estadio Benito Villamarín stadium in Seville tonight.

The Three Lions have not won a competitive game since finishing fourth at the 2018 World Cup in Russia – their best performance at the tournament since 1990.

Gareth Southgate’s side are five points behind Group A table toppers Spain, following England’s 0-0 draw in Croatia on Friday night.

Spain ruined England’s World Cup homecoming last month wining 2-1 at Wembley, with Saul and Rodrigo scoring to cancel out Marcus Rashford’s opener.

Luis Enrique’s side will head into the game full of confidence having swept aside Wales 4-1 in a friendly in Cardiff last Thursday.

Southgate will have to make at least two changes from the XI he selected against Croatia as John Stones and Jordan Henderson are suspended after picking up yellow cards.

This will likely lead to starting places for Liverpool defender Joe Gomez as well as Tottenham’s Harry Winks.

Spain were able to rest a number of key players against Wales and have had a day’s extra rest before playing the Three Lions. Marcos Alonso, Sergio Busquets, Rodrigo and Thiago should all return to the starting lineup.

A victory for Spain will see them win Group A4 after winning both their opening matches, the home side haven’t lost a match in 90 minutes since Euro 2016 and haven’t lost a home competitive match since losing to Greece in June 2003 – 5,609 days ago.

Key Stats

  • It has been 31 years since an England player has scored an international goal in Spain, with Gary Lineker scoring four back in 1987.
  • Spain’s Paco Alcacer has scored nine goals in five matches for club and country this season, averaging a goal every 27 minutes.
  • Harry Kane has failed to score in his past six appearances for England, his joint-longest goalless run for the national side.
  • England are winless in their last four competitive matches (D1 L3). They last went five competitive internationals without a win back in October 1992 under Graham Taylor.
  • England have won just three of their past 13 matches against Spain (W3 D3 L7), and just one of their past seven (W1 D1 L5).

Predicted England Line-up

Pickford, Tripper, Gomez, Maguire, Chilwell, Winks, Dier, Barkley, Rashford, Kane, Sterling

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