It’s less than three months until England’s 2018 World Cup campaign gets underway in Russia and manager Gareth Southgate has rung the changes ahead of friendlies against Netherlands and Italy.
Experienced players like Gary Cahill, who’s struggled for minutes at Chelsea this season miss out, while there are rewards for Nick Pope and James Tarkowski, who’ve both starred for Burnley this season. However, Joe Hart makes the squad, despite losing out on his starting place for West Ham and a number of disappointing performances for the Hammers.
The Netherlands are likely to provide a tough test for Southgate’s side and they include plenty of exciting young talent in their ranks. Despite finishing third at the last World Cup, the Dutch failed to qualify for Euro 2016 and again miss out on this year’s tournament. Ronald Koeman has taken charge of the international team and his youthful team packs plenty of excitement, while older players like Robin van Persie, Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben have either retired or been left out of his squad.
Netherlands vs. England Predictions
Despite featuring a host of Premier League talent, this Dutch side are a relative unknown. It’ll be their first game under Koeman’s management and going by his time in England and Dutch tradition, expect a possession based game. Brazil dominated possession against England and while they didn’t find the back of the net, England didn’t offer anything in attack. This game regularly sees both teams score, but it wouldn’t be a surprise if this one ended as a goalless draw.
Netherlands vs. England Betting Tips
Head to Head
- The last meeting between the two teams was in a friendly at Wembley in 2016. Netherlands won 2-1.
- Netherlands are unbeaten in the last seven meetings between the two teams, winning three times and drawing four. All of those games were friendlies.
- The last four meetings between the two sides saw both teams score.
- England haven’t beaten Holland since Euro 1996, winning 4-1, with Alan Shearer and Teddy Sheringham scoring two goals each.
Netherlands Team News
Ronald Koeman has named five uncapped players in his first international squad as he manages his nation for the first time. The most eye-catching uncapped player is Justin Kluivert, son of former Dutch international Patrick Kluivert, who’s lit up the Eredivisie for Ajax this season.
Robin van Persie hasn’t been called up and it’s also the first Dutch squad without Wesley Sneijder, who announced his international retirement earlier in March.
Netherlands Squad: Marco Bizot, Jasper Cillessen, Jeroen Zoet, Patrick van Aanholt, Nathan Ake, Virgil van Dijk, Timothy Fosu-Mensah, Hans Hateboer, Matthijs de Ligt, Kenny Tete, Stefan de Vrij, Donny van de Beek, Davy Propper, Marten de Roon, Kevin Strootman, Guus Til, Tonny Vilhena, Georginio Wijnaldum, Ryan Babel, Steven Berghuis, Memphis Depay, Bas Dost, Justin Kluivert, Quincy Promes, Wout Weghorst.
England Team News
There are first call-ups for Burnley players Nick Pope and James Tarkowski, while Alfie Mawson and Lewis Cook are also in line for their international debuts if they play against Netherlands or Italy. Gary Cahill, Chris Smalling and Michael Keane all miss out on international selection, just three months away from the World Cup. Jack Wilshere returns to the international scene, having last played against Iceland at Euro 2016.
England Squad: Joe Hart, Jordan Pickford, Jack Butland, Nick Pope, Kyle Walker, Kieran Trippier, Ryan Bertrand, Danny Rose, John Stones, James Tarkowski, Alfie Mawson, Joe Gomez, Harry Maguire, Eric Dier, Jack Wilshre, Jordan Henderson, Jake Livermore, Adam Lallana, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Dele Alli, Raheem Sterling, Ashley Young, Jesse Lingard, Lewis Cook, Danny Welbeck, Jamie Vardy, Marcus Rashford