England temper Russian Federation 2018 optimism

Ann Santiago
October 8, 2017

They now turn their attention to an away trip to Lithuania tomorrow, however the pressure is now off having wrapped up qualification.

MANAGER Gareth Southgate acknowledges England have to improve, but has warned there is only so much that can be achieved before the World Cup.

But which players does Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson believe should be on the plane to Russian Federation? At least in the old days the players would compensate for their poor technique by running themselves into the ground, but this England team don't even do that. "My job, my first objective, is to get the country to a World Cup finals, then make the team as good as we possibly can and that's what I intend to do".

Harry Kane's 94th-minute victor did little to mask what had been a drab tie and Southgate admits that while he is keen to rotate his team, he is also thinking about coming home with three points.

Kane scored the only goal in England's victory over Slovenia at the Wembley Stadium in London in the 2018 World Cup qualifier.

Despite one of the most boring home displays of recent years on Thursday night, Glenn launched a passionate defence of the commitment of England's players and refuted suggestions that some care more about success with their clubs than with the national side.

"It feels unbelievable to get there (to the World Cup)", Kane said after his 11th goal in 22 internationals.

England have won all three of their previous encounters with Lithuania on the global stage, scoring nine and conceding none in the process.

So far Wilshere has yet to feature in the Premier League but he has played twice in the Europa League and in the League Cup.

Kane's strike against Slovenia was England's third stoppage time goal which earned five qualifying points.

Seaman played a key role in England making the semi-finals at Euro 96 after saving two penalties, one against Scotland in the group stage and the next in a quarter-final shoot-out against Spain. If Dele can recreate his club form on the global stage, he can be the one to lead England out of their creative slump. When he was substituted at Huddersfield, the home fans gave him a round of applause, despite scoring twice against the Terriers.

'Everyone was disappointed with the performance [against Slovenia], none more so than me.

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