Published: Fri, June 08, 2018
Sports | By Toni Houston

Trent Alexander-Arnold confirmed for England start against Costa Rica

Trent Alexander-Arnold confirmed for England start against Costa Rica

Navas was representing Costa Rica at Elland Road as they faced England in a World Cup warm-up match.

Substitute Welbeck made certain of the win 14 minutes from time, though, diving to head home Dele Alli's cross, as England earned a vociferous send-off from the Leeds crowd before their opening match in Russian Federation against Tunisia on June 18.

And Rashford felt his performance in Thursday's game, in which Danny Welbeck headed in the second goal, was helped by his more carefree approach.

Marcus Rashford played up front alongside Jamie Vardy, and the Manchester United youngster opened the scoring with a belting long-range effort on 13 minutes that left Keylor Navas flapping at thin air. I've not got a player in the squad who I would think twice about putting into the opening game of the World Cup.

There remains a possibility that Henderson could play in the more advanced role, but that would be a change of gear given his shielding responsibilities at Liverpool, while Dier is capable - but not eager - to play in a back three.

England take on Tunisia in their opening group game and Southgate insisted before the match that places in his starting line-up were still up for grabs.

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He spoke and wrote about needed to leave Russian Federation because of threats against him and his family. In both cases, Ukraine's government blamed Russian Federation for being involved.

"I thought today his [Rashford's] linking play was good, his individuality of running at people and taking people on in and around the penalty area was good, and of course it's a wonderful strike for the goal; and he worked incredibly hard for the team to press and shut down".

But that's because against Costa Rica, the likes of Rashford and Loftus-Cheek were afforded time on the ball to work their magic, meaning a player of Vardy's special skill set was not truly needed.

All three of England's goalkeepers are rather inexperienced at worldwide level going into the tournament - they have won just 10 caps between them.

Danny Rose and the uncapped Trent Alexander-Arnold should also feature at Elland Road in the final warm-up match before the tournament in Russian Federation.

The attackers looked void of any creativity and confidence going up against an England back-three still working out their kinks, with just three of their eight shots hitting the target. Navas may have enjoyed his clash with English opposition in the Champions League football but this was a different story!

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