England pushes desperation. While many Scots were still celebrating in the stands at Wembley Stadium, English team boss Gareth Southgate was the first to answer questions. Most important: Why didn’t his team come out 0-0 against old rivals and outsiders on Friday in London? “It’s been a disappointing night. We know we can play better,” Southgate said.
They missed out on early entry into the European Championship round of 16 with a selection draw. “We didn’t do enough to win the game,” admitted Southgate, whose team was excited after the final whistle. “I understand this reaction, but our first goal is to get to the knockout stage, and we are on the right track,” the coach insisted. England, with four points after two matches, can plan round 16 ahead of Tuesday’s final group match against the Czech Republic.
The Scots are three points short, but they can continue to hold on to hopes thanks to points won with their neighbors. “The goal tonight was to take a few more chances out of this game. And we did it,” Scotland coach Steve Clarke said.
The Scots certainly need a win against Croatia at their home at Hampden Park in Glasgow on Tuesday. With your own fans behind you, it doesn’t seem impossible. Already at Wembley they had a huge party from start to finish. “The fans were amazing. They sang from the first minute to the last, which gave us a lot of encouragement,” said 20-year-old Scottish midfielder Billy Gilmour, who was named Player of the Game.
Ken didn’t attract attention
The British, on the other hand, were far from “excellent”. Top striker Harry Kane had no significant chance of scoring again and was replaced in the 74th minute. “It wasn’t our best performance,” Kane said.
Southgate justified his goalscorer’s replacement with a desire to instill more energy in the team. “I felt we needed more runs behind the defense and Marcus (note: Rashford) could get us those runs.” As a criticism of Kane, the team boss did not want the statement to be interpreted. “It’s not about a player. And the Scots pretty well got him out of the game.”
Kane’s offensive allies Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden or Rashford were also ineffective after being replaced. Jadon Sancho was also not replaced – rumors are already swirling that the Dortmund star could have allowed himself to be disciplined again and was therefore not considered by Southgate.
Meanwhile, it was announced that London Police had arrested 30 people in and around the lot. Scotland Yard announced on Saturday that nearly half of it was due to public order violations. Attacks on police officers were the cause in four cases. Drunkenness and substance abuse also played a part.
The stadium had 20,306 spectators during the game, 22,500 were admitted. So many Scottish fans gathered in central London, including Leicester Square in the West End. Many were wearing kilts and wrapped in Scottish flags. 20 million people in the UK watched the game on TV.