England vs Hungary: The Three Lions may be getting closer to the World Cup finals, but will Phil Foden keep his place in midfield?

England may take another important step towards the World Cup in Qatar next year when they face Hungary at Wembley on Tuesday night.

Gareth Southgate’s side are four points ahead of Group A second-group Albania after Saturday’s 5-0 away win over Andorra, and a second win at Wembley would put them on the brink of qualifying.

England will have to wait until the international break in November to be sure of their place in next year’s championship regardless of Tuesday’s results, but the momentum has come after another strong qualifying campaign.

Is Foden’s future in the middle of the field?

There’s not much to take away from 156th in the world, but the victory over Andorra allowed Phil Foden to at least demonstrate his chances of securing a starting midfielder spot.

The 21-year-old has been mainly used on the wings by Pep Guardiola and Southgate since his big breakthrough for club and country, but his future has long been seen in midfield and his performances against Andorra have shown why.

Foden was an outstanding player at the Andorran National Stadium and his deeper role allowed him to dictate play and demonstrate his excellent passing range as he sent England on the attack on several occasions.

Air sports Analyst Roy Keane compared him to legendary NFL quarterback Tom Brady – “He just hits people … He makes it so easy,” he said – while Southgate was also impressed .

– It’s wonderful, isn’t it? The English coach then said. “When you try to break the defense like we are doing today and you have a player who sees the passes he sees and can take them like he does.”

The question now is whether Foden’s performance will convince Southgate to give him another chance in midfield against a stronger opponent on Tuesday.

England will likely be very different from Hungary, but with Calvin Philip’s injury there is a chance in the squad alongside Declan Rice.

Southgate could try Jordan Henderson instead, but as Foden develops physical prowess as well as his innate technical abilities, it may not be long before the Manchester City star is more likely to play in England.

“He’s getting stronger and stronger, so it’s exciting for us that one of these midfield positions has potential,” Southgate added.

Who fills McGuire?

Southgate claims John Stones is not in danger of losing his seat in England despite struggling to play for Manchester City.

The Stones haven’t played a minute for Guardiola’s side this season, but have started three of England’s last four games, including Saturday’s win over Andorra, and Southgate has no qualms about not playing at club level.

John Stones and Harry Maguire, Anglia
John Stones and Harry Maguire became the first choice at the heart of England’s central defense

“John, when is he coming back?” [to City]He said this week: “Everyone knows the quality so he will be in the squad and I don’t think that’s a problem in the future.”

His early withdrawal from Andorra suggests Southgate wanted him to cool off in the Hungary game, but as Harry Maguire is absent with a calf problem, the identity of his mid-defense partner at Wembley remains unknown.

Conor Cowade is hoping to keep his seat after a strong performance against Andorra, but Wolf Man has rarely been tested on the defensive end, and the same is true of Fikayo Tomori, who played the last half hour of this game, only his second. for England. . after replacing the stones. .

England's Tyrone Mings (left) and John Stones during training at St George's Park, Burton upon Trent.  Shooting date: Thursday, June 17, 2021
Will Tyrone Mings team up with John Stones against Hungary?

This makes Tyrone Mings the most realistic option for Southgate. The Aston Villa player is left-handed, which means he offers a different dimension to other England center-back options, and since his debut in 2019 he has already gained a lot of experience playing 14 appearances.

Another option for Southgate is to switch to a tripartite defense, but England have not used this system since their 2-0 win over Germany at Euro 2020. A defensive turn from the Stones and Mings seems more likely.

Kane is in charge, but who’s backing him?

Harry Kane is set to return to the top after Tammy Abraham had the opportunity to influence Andorra with many players vying for positions on both sides.

Englishman Harry Kane applauds fans as he warms up for the England-Andorra 2022 World Cup qualifying match between England and Andorra at Wembley Stadium, London on Sunday September 5, 2021 (AP Photo / Ian Walton)
England’s Harry Kane was an unused replacement against Andorra

Jack Grealish and Raheem Sterling may be the favorites to start the bench selection on Saturday, but they’re not the only contenders.

Bukayo Saka scored for his 20th birthday against Andorra last month and scored the same opponent on Saturday. The famous Arsenal winger continues to consolidate his international position after impressing him in England’s pursuit of the Euro 2020 final.

The tournament ended in heartbreak for Saka, of course, missing a penalty which was crucial for the penalty shootout loss to Italy, but reacted impressively to the defeat and there were signs of improvement in the performance of Jadon Sancho on Saturday.

The former Borussia Dortmund winger had a rough start to life at Manchester United following his transfer of 73million this summer, but he got assists against Andorra, and then there was praise from Southgate as the boss of England asked for patience as he stood at his feet. Old Trafford.

Bucayo Saka, Andora v Anglia
Bukayo Saka scored his third English goal against Andorra

“For a young player who has made such a big change in his life, a new league, a new club, a different style of play, a different training system, coming back to life in Manchester, moving and all that goes there is a lot to do with it, he said.

“It will take time, but he showed a lot of his qualities [against Andorra] And I know that will come with the club too.

Whether he is a beginner or not, Sancho, like Saka, is once again hoping to make an impact in Hungary.

Opta statistics – England’s prestige in qualifying

  • England have won their last 21 home qualifiers, scoring 73 goals and conceding seven since the 1-1 draw against Ukraine in September 2012.
  • England have only been beaten once in their last 54 major qualifiers (W43 D10), with the loss eliminated against the Czech Republic in October 2019. England have scored 40 goals, conceding only twice in these matches since the defeat.
  • Thirty-six of Harry Kane’s 41 goals scored by England have been scored in international competition. Only Wayne Rooney, 37, has scored more in English friendly than Kane. Rooney scored every 154 minutes and Kane every 118 minutes.
  • Bukayo Saka marked his 20th birthday when he last appeared at Wembley for England against Andorra – aged 20 and 37 days. He could have become the youngest English player to score in consecutive matches at Wembley, breaking the record currently held by Jimmy Greaves (20 years and 249 days in October 1960).
  • Harry Kane has scored nine goals in 13 games for England in 2021. If he scores again, he will become the second player to score 10 or more goals in more than a calendar year with the Three Lions, scoring 12 goals in 2019. Vivian Woodward, who scored 10 points in 1908 and 11 in 1909.
  • England are undefeated in the last 14 games against Hungary in all competitions (12 v., N. 2) since losing 2-1 at the 1962 World Cup under Walter Winterbottom.
  • Hungary have lost nine of their 10 away matches against England. The second was the famous 6-3 win at Wembley in November 1953, where Nandor Hidekoti scored a hat-trick and the Three Lions conceded six goals at Wembley in the only one remaining. .

When can England qualify?

England only need two more wins to be sure of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar following Saturday’s 5-0 win over Andorra.

Gareth Southgate’s men are four points ahead of second-placed Albania, which leads Group A after seven games with just three games to go.

England host Hungary on Tuesday night, but even if they win at Wembley and Albania loses at home to third Poland on the same night, that won’t confirm the Three Lions’ arrival at the 2022 World Cup. in Qatar.

England then ended their qualifying campaign, hosting Albania on November 12, when they scored three points at the top of the group before heading three days later to lower club San Marino. .

However, given the advantage that qualifies, there is still a slight margin of error – especially since reaching Qatar with a second place is no easy feat.

How to follow the qualifiers for the World Cup in England?

England face Hungary at Wembley on Tuesday 12 October (7.45pm) and it will be possible to follow the game live minute by minute for both teams. Air sports The free match app and website are also available on both platforms from 11:00 p.m.

The most interesting excerpts to watch for free will be available on Air sports Website and app more Sky Sports Football YouTube channel from 11:00 p.m.

Winston Ferguson

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