Bulgaria v England preview: Can the Three Lions bounce back with a win?
Harry Kane celebrates his opener against Czech Republic via Getty Images- Thomas Elsenhuth

England travel to Sofia to take on Bulgaria at the Stadion Vasil Levski.

England can secure their place in next year's UEFA Euro 2020 Championships if they get a victory in Bulgaria and thrid placed Kosovo fail to win against Montenegro. 

The Three Lions do come into this match on the back of a defeat away at Czech Republic. England took an early lead in the fifh minute thanks to a penalty from captain Harry Kane. Czech Republic hit back straight away through Jakub Barbec. It wasn't until the 85th minute for the game to be decided. Substitute Zdeněk Ondrášek scored the winner on what was his debut. 

Bulgaria are currently without a win in Euro 2020 qualifying and come into this game at the bottom of group A. Bulgaria did keep a clean sheet in their last game against Montenegro with a 0-0, but they have no chance of qualifying for next summer's tournament. Bulgaria are also without a competitive win in a year and they will be hoping to put that right in front of a home crowd. 

A strange feeling

Friday's defeat to the Czech Republic was England's first defeat in 43 qualifying matches, a run that stretched back 10 years to October 2009. 

Captain Kane spoke about how they are going to bounce back from the defeat saying: "When you lose you reflect on everything, your own performance and the team's. It definitely opens up your eyes a little bit more.

Whenever you are winning you kind of just move on to the next game and maybe you don't see the whole picture and what we can improve on.When you lose you start looking back at other games, or maybe that's been happening for a few games now.

"It's important to turn that into a positive and make sure we learn from that and take that into the Bulgaria match." 

England won the reverse fixture 4-0 at Wembley last month and have not lost back to back away games in over 10 years. 

England and Bulgaria have faced each other 11 times before and the Three Lions are unbeaten against Bulgaria winning seven of the games. England have won the last three fixtures between the two with an aggregate score of 11-0. 

England boss Gareth Southgate reiterated the sentiment of captain Kane and had this to say following Friday's defeat: "It's an unusual feeling for this group of players because they haven't had a really disappointing, unexpected disappointing result.

We have had disappointing results in some big matches against high-calibre opposition, but against the slightly lower ranked teams, that's our first experience of that."

Team News 

It is likely that Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings will make his England debut tonight, most likely in the place of Everton's Michael Keane. Leicester City's Ben Chilwell is the likely replacement for the suspended Danny Rose. 

Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold could also come into replace Kieran Trippier. Southgate is likely to rotate the squad massively from Friday's defeat which could see Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Winks brought into the midfield. 

Bulgaria have no injury or suspension issues and can pick a full strength side. 

 

VAVEL Logo