England vs Czech Republic: Gareth Southgate’s side ‘aren’t perfect’ in defence, says Jaroslav Silhavy

The manager claims his side’s hopes have been bolstered by England’s defensive blunders against Kosovo

Alice Reeves-Turner
Thursday 10 October 2019 18:51
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England’s defensive imperfections will be targeted by the Czech Republic in Friday’s Euro 2020 qualifier, according to head coach Jaroslav Silhavy

If the Three Lions are able to continue their 100 per cent winning start to their qualifying campaign they will secure a place at the finals with three matches to spare.

Gareth Southgate’s side have won all four qualifiers to date but were faced with a shock scare in their last Euro match when Kosovo took the lead after an early defensive blunder and later threatened a second-half comeback.

Silhavy said Kosovo’s ability to breach England’s defence shocked him and has bolstered his side’s hopes of claiming victory at the Sinobo Stadium.

The Czech head coach said: “We were quite surprised when we learned the match ended 5-3, but we ourselves know Kosovo is very strong and in attack they have great players.

“England made mistakes, but they don’t repeat that often. England maybe could have scored nine goals so great strength.

“What we saw in that game was England are not perfect and we hope to take advantage.”

Despite Silhavy’s hopes for victory, it will take a mammoth effort to defeat the Three Lions’ who have not lost in 43 Euro and World Cup qualifying matches, especially with the attackers at their disposal.

Czech Republic are wary of the threat Raheem Sterling possesses

Having scored eight goals and assisted four more in his last eight England appearances, Raheem Sterling has been particularly impressive for his country as of late.

When asked about the attacking midfielder Silhavy said: “It’s not only Raheem Sterling obviously. England have a great squad and it’s all about teamwork. Sterling is really fast, and speed is his strength, but he has great teammates.

“As to our plan, we really need to focus on him, guard him, not let him turn around and always know where he’s at.”

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