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England 3-0 Bosnia-Herzegovina: Comfortable Friendly Win for Southgate’s Men

by: EdwardB


England began their European Championship preparations by securing a convincing 3-0 win against non-qualifiers Bosnia-Herzegovina on June 3 at St James’ Park. Despite a lackluster first half, goals from debutant Cole Palmer, Trent Alexander-Arnold, and captain Harry Kane secured a confidence-boosting win for Gareth Southgate’s side.

Slow Start Gives Way to Second-Half Surge

The first half was a relatively uneventful affair, with England struggling to break down a resolute Bosnian defense. Clear-cut chances were few and far between as the two sides headed into the break goalless. However, the game sprang to life in the second half. England significantly increased their tempo and were rewarded in the 60th minute when Cole Palmer, who enjoyed a stellar debut, confidently dispatched a penalty after Ezri Konsa was brought down in the box. This goal proved to be the catalyst for England’s dominant second-half display.

Cole Palmer penalty

Palmer and Alexander-Arnold Shine for England

Cole Palmer, who has been in fine form for Chelsea this season, scoring nine penalties, announced himself on the international stage with a composed performance capped off with a well-taken goal. His confidence and ability to create chances from midfield did not go unnoticed.

Trent Alexander-Arnold, deployed in a hybrid midfield role, was arguably England’s most dangerous player on the night. The Liverpool man constantly troubled the Bosnian defense with his passing range and attacking intent, eventually getting on the scoresheet with a stunning strike from a tight angle in the 85th minute – his third goal for the national team.

Southgate Faces Squad Selection Headache

This friendly provided an important opportunity for Southgate to assess his options ahead of the upcoming tournament. Notably absent from the squad were key players such as Jude Bellingham, who was given extended leave following his Champions League triumph with Real Madrid. With the deadline for announcing his final 26-man squad for Euro 2024 fast approaching (June 7th), Southgate faces some tough decisions in the coming days.

Final Preparations Before Euro 2024

England will have one final opportunity to fine-tune their preparations before the European Championship kicks off, with a friendly against Iceland scheduled for June 7th at Wembley. This match will provide Southgate with one last chance to experiment with his lineup and give game time to those hoping to secure a place in the final squad. Following the Iceland game, all focus will shift towards the tournament opener and making a strong start to their Euro 2024 campaign in Germany.

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