England face Switzerland in their opening game of the Euro 2016 qualification campaign tonight. Roy Hodgson’s side warmed up for the tie with a 1-0 win over Norway which was heavily criticised for its lack of entertainment in-front of a half-full Wembley.
Switzerland will pose a tougher test for England with the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri who will look to be the man who unlocks the England defence. Arguably the two strongest sides of the group will battle it out together on the opening match of the group-stage to pick up 3 vital points.
Roy Hodgson has already insisted he would rather play Switzerland later on in the competition, but it’s not down to him to pick the draw. England have been hit heavy blows with a number of injuries to crucial players: Daniel Sturridge, Jordan Henderson, Luke Shaw, Ross Barkley, Theo Walcott are just a few players who have missed out through injury.
As the Three Lions travel to Switzerland ahead of tonights clash, Hodgson will be hoping his men are more inspiring after their narrow victory over Norway. The England manager has selected a youthful side and with the injuries striking against England too, it could prove an even tougher test than first anticipated.
However, it will give an idea as to where England will need to improve and highlight areas of strength and weakness. A new era is emerging for England and it would be naive to think it will click over night. These players need to get used to each other and the style of play they are adopting.
With a tough test in Switzerland, maybe this is the best thing for the new looking England side. Where better to prove their worth in the squad than in qualification against a very capable Switzerland.
Tonight should prove to be an interesting affair.