EletiofeIceland v England: Nations League – live!

Iceland v England: Nations League – live!

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5 min “Apropos your preamble of Euro 2016 starting the rebirth of the England squad, Southgate has only retained four of England’s XI from that match (Kane, Sterling, Walker, Dier),” says Yuval Weber. “And looking at the substitutes, not sure who beyond J. Henderson and Rashford would be in the team today.”

4 min Lots of England possession in the first few minutes. Kane has a speculative pop from 20 yards; it’s well hit but comfortably saved by Halldorsson.

2 min “While most of the Nations League coverage in America has been relegated to cable and the Spanish language stations, this fixture has been promoted to ABC’s national broadcast,” says Mary Waltz. “For football fans on this side of the Atlantic this is a big deal.”

1 min Peep peep! Iceland, in blue, kick off from left to right. England are in white.

Raheem Sterling kneels in support of Black Lives Matter.

Raheem Sterling kneels in support of Black Lives Matter. Photograph: John Sibley/Reuters

Updated

Iceland have made a change in the warm-up, with Albert Gudmundsson replacing Kolbeinn Sigthorsson. The revised teams are:

Iceland (4-4-2) Halldorsson; Hermansson, Ingason, Arnason, H Magnusson; Traustason, B Bjarnason, Palsson, Porsteinsson; Gudmundsson, Bodvarsson.

Substitutes: Kristinsson, Runarsson, Fjoluson, Eyjolfsson, Friojonsson, A Sigurdsson, Anderson, Fridjonsson, Baldursson, Hallfredsson, Skulason.

England (4-1-2-3) Pickford; Walker, Gomez, Dier, Trippier; Rice; Ward-Prowse, Foden; Sancho, Kane, Sterling.

Substitutes: Pope, D Henderson, Alexander-Arnold, Mings, Keane, Grealish, Mount, Maitland-Niles, Coady, Phillips, Ings, Greenwood.

This is another young England side, with only the two full-backs, Walker and Trippier, over the age of 27. English football has come a helluva long way since that French farce four years ago.

“Hello Rob,” says Kári Tulinius. “It bugs me a little that sporting authorities can’t handle Icelandic naming conventions. Basically, whether we have patronyms, family names, or both, Icelanders are referred to by our first names. Even the president is simply referred to by his first name, Guðni. Reading a list of Icelandic last names just feels wrong. It would be like Zinedine Zidane, Matt Le Tissier and Sol Campbell were listed as Yazid, Paul and Jeremiah. Yeah, their middle name is part of their name, but it’s not right either.”

What names do they have on their shirts? And is that dictated by Uefa?

Updated

The players are ready for action. It’s a crisp, sunny evening in Reykjavik. Little brisk.

“Bit of a leftfield one here but would Dan Burn have been worth a place in the squad?” says Carl Whinder. “Consistent performer for Brighton last year and can play centre back, left of a back three, left back and left wing back.”

I’m sure he’ll have been discussed, especially as they short on left-backs in this squad. He’s not the only Brighton defender Gareth Southgate will be looking at this season.

Gareth Southgate’s pre-match thoughts

“I’ve said to go out and show what they can do – they’ve waited long enough to go and play, and they’re eager to play. There’s a stubborn opponent in front of us so we have to be patient and counter the threats that they have. But as much as anything I want them to enjoy their football and show people what they’ve been missing.

“We know how much quality [Phil Foden] has got, and he’s fitted straight in. That’s the beauty of St George’s Park – the younger players come in, they know how we play, and we’re not asking him to do anything different to what he does every day of the week.”

Team news

Manchester City’s Phil Foden, 20, makes his England debut in a midfield that also includes James Ward-Prowse. It looks like Kieran Trippier is playing at left-back, with either Eric Dier or Declan Rice in the centre of the defence.

Iceland (4-4-2) Halldorsson; Hermansson, Ingason, Arnason, H Magnusson; Traustason, B Bjarnason, Palsson, Porsteinsson; Sigthorsson, Bodvarsson.

Substitutes: Kristinsson, Runarsson, Fjoluson, Eyjolfsson, Friojonsson, A Sigurdsson, Gudmundsson, Anderson, Fridjonsson, Baldursson, Hallfredsson, Skulason.

England (4-1-2-3) Pickford; Walker, Gomez, Dier, Trippier; Rice; Ward-Prowse, Foden; Sancho, Kane, Sterling.

Substitutes: Pope, D Henderson, Alexander-Arnold, Mings, Keane, Grealish, Mount, Maitland-Niles, Coady, Phillips, Ings, Greenwood.

Updated

Preamble

Hello. Forget all this talk of England seeking revenge against Iceland tonight. They should arrive at Laugardalsvöllur in Reykjavik offering thanks, because that humiliating defeat at Euro 2016 was the catalyst for the rebirth of a national team that had been drifting aimlessly for a decade or more.

We’ll never know where England would be had they beaten Iceland and lost acceptably to France in the quarter-finals of Euro 2016. But I doubt they would have reached the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup, and I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t be the favourites – the favourites! – to win Euro 2021.

They aren’t favourites to win the Nations League, which might seem contradictory but is presumably because they are in the same group as Belgium. Only one team will qualify for the Nations League Finals, with Iceland and Denmark completing the group. England start with two matches in Scandinavia: Reykjavik this afternoon and Copenhagen on Tuesday. Six points would be gratefully received.

Kick off 5pm BST.

Updated

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