Euro: England beats Czech to top Group D

London: England found an attacking spark to beat the Czech Republic 1-0 at Wembley on Tuesday and clinch top spot in Group D at Euro 2020.

Raheem Sterling, who kept his place alongside Harry Kane in a rejigged attack, settled fans’ nerves with an early headed goal, which ultimately proved decisive. England boss Gareth Southgate made four changes to the side that produced an insipid display in the 0-0 draw against Scotland, handing Jack Grealish and Bukayo Sako their first starts of the tournament.

Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount was unavailable as he was isolating due to coronavirus protocols while Southgate opted to leave Phil Foden out to prevent the risk of a suspension.

Manchester United defender Harry Maguire made his first appearance of Euro 2020 alongside John Stones in central defence.

Both teams had already qualified for the last 16, but top spot in the group was on the line, and with it the dubious privilege of a potential clash against world champions France, holders Portugal or Germany.

The home side started brightly in the evening sunshine and Sterling went agonisingly close in just the second minute but could only watch as his deft chip over the goalkeeper come back off the post after he collected a raking pass from Luke Shaw.

As chants of Football’s Coming Home rang around the stadium, captain Kane — heavily criticised for his toothless performances in the tournament so far — shot from distance and Grealish let fly.

Agency