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England vs Slovakia: Match Preview, Team News, Predictions and More

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Pressure continues to mount on Gareth Southgate following a series of underwhelming performances by the Three Lions in the ongoing European Championships.

The expectations, complemented by the pressure to represent England, will once again be at stake as Southgate’s men take on a must-win fixture against Slovakia in the round of sixteen. The Three Lions have their path to face Italy or Switzerland set as they return to Gelsenkirchen on Sunday evening to rub shoulders with Francesco Calzona’s men.

Southgate is still experimenting and working out his squad going into the knockouts, with many Brits fuming about the continuing instability in the squad and lack of tactical presence on the pitch. The English manager opted to sit out Trent Alexander Arnold in their final game of the group stages and preferred playing Conor Gallagher in the middle of the park. This decision started a debate among the English supporters and pundits alike, questioning the Three Lions gaffer’s approach as his team prepares to go deep into the knockout stages of the tournament. 

And they would want Gelsenkirchen to be a lucky host once again, as this was the only place where England won their only game of the Euro’s 2024. 

There is a glimpse of hope for the English supporters following their final group game against Slovenia, where the likes of Anthony Gordon, Cole Palmer, and Kobbie Mainoo put in an impressive set of performances, which can force Southgate to tinker with what appears to be a lethargic and predictable starting lineup.

While England are the favourites on paper, Slovakia is not pushed around. They would like to walk into the game with underdog status but come out all guns blazing when it gets down to business. Slovakia came into the game on the back of a 1-1 draw against Romania in the final fixture of the game; however, it was a 1-0 win over Belgium in the first game of the ongoing campaign that earned them a spot in the last sixteen.

Francesco Calzona would be looking to capitalise on the experience of Skriniar, Lobotka, Dubravka, and Duda while enforcing a disciplined block complemented by a venomous transition and set pieces.

England will play Slovakia in a UEFA European Championship Round of 16 on Sunday, June 30 at 12:00 PM ET.

England vs Slovakia: TEAM NEWS


The three lions are one of the favourites to win the European Championships this summer owing to the side of the bracket they’ve drawn, which appears favourable compared to the other side of the draw. Although they will need to find their feet soon as every game could be their last henceforth,. 

Gareth Southgate will have to decide whether to keep his trust in the likes of Jude Bellingham and Bukayo Saka or give opportunities to others on the fence who can help turn the juggernaut that the Three Lions are.

Southgate will continue with Pickford in the goal, with Kyle Walker taking up the right-back role, accompanied by John Stones and Marc Guehi at the heart of defence as Kieran Trippier completes the back four. Declan Rice keeps his place, with Kobbie Mainoo coming in a pivotal role with the Arsenal star midfielder. Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden continue on the flanks as Jude Bellingham takes up the number-ten role behind Harry Kane.

England Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Pickford, Walker, Stones, Guehi, Trippier, Mainoo, Rice, Saka, Bellingham, Foden, and Kane

England vs Slovakia: Predicted lineup of Southgate’s side for the fixture.


Stanislav Lobotka has been running the show for Slovakia in the ongoing European Championships, and he will be a key figure if Slovakia are to play a major upset in Germany. His presence in the midfield has helped them reach the last sixteen, as his tireless displays have been integral to maintaining Slovakia’s drive and defensive stability throughout the group stages.

With no suspensions or injuries to deal with, Calzona should continue with Dubravka between the sticks as Herta BSC right-back. Pekarik takes up the full-back role on the right side, with Vavro and Skriniar taking up the sports at the heart of the pitch as David Hancko compiles the back four for Slovakia. The ever-young Kucka should start among the midfield three, with Lobotka and Duda accompanying the 37-year-old in the middle of the park. Strelec continues to lead the line, with Schranz and Haraslin along the flanks.

Slovakia Predicted XI (4-3-3): Dubravka, Pekarik, Vavro, Skriniar, Hancko, Kucka, Lobotka, Duda, Schranz Strelec, Haraslin 

England vs Slovakia: Predicted lineup of Slovakia for the fixture.

England vs Slovakia: Key Stats

  • Slovakia’s goal differential at ‘0’ ranks tenth in the UEFA European Championship.
  • Bukayo Saka has only provided one assist in the ongoing European Championship.
  • Ivan Schranz has scored two goals in Euro’s this campaign.
  • Slovakia has scored three goals in three games, while England has only conceded one in three matches.

Match-deciding duel

Harry Kane vs. Milan Škriniar

The English striker has yet to replicate his club form for the Three Lions in the ongoing European Championships, and he will be expected to make an impact in the round of sixteen. The England skipper can be a nightmare to deal with, as any minute loss of concentration can lead to him punishing the opposition with his lethal finishing ability. Moreover, he is also capable of switching into a false nine role to back the wingers and exploit the space in behind. 

However, Škriniar is no pushover either. The PSG defender will be on top of the former Tottenham ace and avoid any space that can allow Kane to leave his mark on the final score. The duel will be an important piece of how the game turns out, and Slovakia will be looking to take advantage of England’s frustrations if they can successfully keep them at bay deep into the game.


England 1-0 Slovakia

While the English have struggled this campaign, they are the favourites going into the game. The stars in their line-up have individual qualities that can decide games on their own, and Gareth Southgate will be hoping that his men can finally click and produce a convincing performance this Sunday.