England give invitation to Gary Lineker with Gareth Southgate's side poor again in Slovenia Euro 2024 draw

England Slovenia

England have invited more criticism from Gary Lineker after struggling in their Euro 2024 draw with Slovenia

PA
Jack Otway

By Jack Otway


Published: 25/06/2024

- 21:51

Updated: 25/06/2024

- 22:43

The Three Lions were unable to score during the match at the Cologne Stadium

In the build-up to England's Euro 2024 clash with Slovenia, Gary Lineker dominated the headlines.

After branding the Three Lions 's**t' following the disappointing 1-1 draw with Denmark last time out, the BBC presenter was forced to defend himself after fans accused him of being too critical.


Harry Kane shrugged off the criticism, reminding the 63-year-old he has a 'responsibility' as a former player-turned-pundit.

And Gareth Southgate claimed he'd become a master at drowning out any noise from outside, with the England boss saying he was 'oblivious' to any negativity back home.

England Slovenia Euro 2024

England have invited more criticism from Gary Lineker after struggling in their Euro 2024 draw with Slovenia

PA

On Tuesday, England had a chance to issue the perfect response to Lineker.

Sure, they'd been flat against Serbia and Denmark - despite picking up four points to book their spot in the round of 16.

But England would, surely, bring some life to the Euro 2024 party with a fine showing at the Cologne Stadium.

How wrong we were.

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England, with their latest underwhelming showing, have now invited more criticism from Lineker. Why, after all, would he back down or change his tune when they're playing as badly as this?

This is a Three Lions squad with talent and quality in each and every single position. Things, simply put, have to be better than this.

England had some bright moments against Slovenia. Phil Foden, subdued in each of their first two matches, was improved.

Marc Guehi continues to flourish at centre-back in the absence of Harry Maguire, who is missing the tournament through injury, even if he was booked in the second half.

And with two clean sheets from three matches, Jordan Pickford can be forgiven for enjoying himself at Euro 2024.

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However, the negatives outweigh the possibles.

England are flat, a shadow of the impressive side they looked as they made the final of the European Championships three years ago.

Even their brightest flames look extinguished. One bad game is understandable, two at a push. But three?

Jude Bellingham hasn't been seen since the first match against Serbia. The Real Madrid star was even shunted to the right wing sometimes, in a decision that sparked a huge backlash on social media.

Conor Gallagher, brought in for Trent Alexander-Arnold, did nothing to warrant his selection.

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England Slovenia

England did nothing to silence their critics in their goalless Euro 2024 draw with Slovenia

PA

The Chelsea star was picked over Kobbie Mainoo but the Manchester United star did, at least, provide England with more control in the middle of the park.

Bukayo Saka has shrunk into the shadows and it was no surprise to see the Arsenal star come off with roughly 20 minutes of the match to play.

And Harry Kane looks isolated and lost at the tip of Southgate's attack, with England's sharpest sword now blunted.

England nearly conceded early on against Slovenia, with Benjamin Sesko seeing a tame header sail straight at Pickford.

They responded well, creating some chances of their own, with Saka seeing a goal disallowed for offside after some good work from Foden in the build-up.

England Gareth Southgate Slovenia

England boss Gareth Southgate is now under even more pressure after his side's goalless draw with Slovenia at Euro 2024

PA

But while England saw plenty of the ball, they failed to make it count.

Significant improvement is required if England are to finally win something after 58 years of hurt.

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