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Football European Championship

England Top Group After Goalless Draw With Slovenia

  • June 25, 2024
  • 2 min read
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England Top Group After Goalless Draw With Slovenia

England secured top spot in their Euro 2024 group with a laborious 0-0 draw against a stubborn Slovenia at the Rhein Energie Stadion on Tuesday.

Despite dominating possession (74% in the first 20 minutes), Gareth Southgate’s men lacked the finishing touch to break down a resolute Slovenian defense.

England historically enjoys an edge over Slovenia, winning five and drawing one of their last six meetings. However, those victories were often narrow, and the trend continued in Cologne.

The first half unfolded with England controlling the ball but struggling to penetrate. Their best chance came when Phil Foden’s pass found Bukayo Saka for a seemingly easy tap-in, but the goal was disallowed for offside. Foden also had a free-kick saved by the impressive Jan Oblak in the Slovenian goal.

The introduction of Kobbie Mainoo for Conor Gallagher in the second half brought fresh energy, but England’s breakthrough remained elusive. A late substitution of Cole Palmer for Saka offered a spark, but even his creativity couldn’t unlock the Slovenian defense.

The final whistle confirmed a frustrating draw for England, highlighting their dominance in possession but also their struggles in converting chances. As they progress to the knockout stages, Southgate’s team will need a sharper attacking edge to overcome tougher challenges ahead. On the other hand, Slovenia, who are with a population of 2.2 million, reached the knockout stages for the first time ever.

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Nkanyiso Mchunu

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