Bulgaria vs England
Match on October 15, 2019,
Stadion Vasil Levski, Bulgaria
A dire showing in Prague saw Czech Republic run out 2-1 winners to delay the Three Lions confirming their name in November’s tournament group stage draw. However, England have another chance to secure qualification for Euro 2020 Qualifiers when they face Bulgaria in Sofia on Mon night.
Trent Alexander-Arnold had talked about their defensive woes before their game against Czech and it was highlighted in the match. Away against the last placed team in Group A, England will be hoping to count on their defenders.
Meanwhile, Dimitar Berbatov has warned England they could struggle to beat Bulgaria unlike the reverse fixture and the hosts, who have lost 3 and played 3 draws, would be eager to register their first win of the tournament.
Captain Ivelin Popov should return to the side after missing out against Montenegro, with the 3 years old by far the most experienced and highest-scoring player in the squad.
Manager Krasimir Balakov has also been hit with a couple of defensive withdrawals due to injury – both Strahil Popov and Vasil Bozhikov have pulled out of the squad since the Montenegro draw.
They are expected to field a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Bulgaria possible starting lineup this Euro Qualifiers 2019: Plamen Iliev; Georgi Pashov, Kristian Dimitrov, Petar Zanev, Anton Nedyalkov; Marcelinho, Iliya Milanov; Georgi Ivanov, Wanderson, Ivelin Popov; Bozhidar Kraev
Gareth Southgate is likely to consider changes following the defeat in Prague, but captain and striker Harry Kane will retain his place having scored seven goals in five qualifiers so far – including a hat-trick in the reverse fixture.
Michael Keane had another wretched game and Joe Gomez and Fikayo Tomori are waiting in the wings. Both Danny Rose and Kieran Trippier are likely to be swapped out for Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Chilwell.
Harry Winks could come in after England’s pondering midfield showing in Prague. Marcus Rashford will be hoping for a chance from the off.
The similarly in-form Raheem Sterling, who won the penalty Kane converted against the Czechs, is also expected to start again, leaving Rashford to battle it out with Jadon Sancho for the other spot in that front three.
Mason Mount impressed as much as could be expected considering how poor England were on Friday night and could be given the opportunity to earn his second England start.
England are likely to stick to the 4-3-3 formation.
Possible England XI this Euro Qualifiers 2019: Jordan Pickford; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Harry Maguire, Joe Gomez, Ben Chilwell; Jordan Henderson, Harry Winks, Mason Mount; Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford.
With this, we move on to predicting which team will win today’s match?
England won the last head to head game 4-0 with Kane scoring a hattrick last month. Kane has scored in every game of the tournament so far and is expected to continue that streak. Though England will have to address their woes if they have to earn points.
There have been over 2.5 goals scored in England’s last 6 games. Something which should not be a problem on Mon night.
England have kept a clean sheet in their last 4 matches against Bulgaria in all competitions. However, it might be a really uphill task for their struggling defenders.
England have scored at least 3 goals in their last 3 matches against Bulgaria in all competitions. England have been winning at both half time and full time in their last 3 matches against Bulgaria in all competitions. That at the moment looks like a fantasy.