Declan Rice outlines what England must change for Euro 2024

Declan Rice outlines what England must change for Euro 2024

Declan Rice has called upon England to become more ‘switched on’ against defensive teams following their shock 1-0 loss to Iceland on Friday.

The Three Lions were undone by a 12th-minute Jon Thorsteinsson goal and were booed off by the Wembley crowd as they fell to the nation ranked 72nd in the world in their final match before Euro 2024.

England are one of the pre-tournament favourites for this summer’s competition but fans and players alike will have taken a hit to their confidence following a match that produced just one shot on target for the hosts — compared to four from Iceland.

Midfielder Declan Rice was visibly disappointed after the match and outlined where England could improve in their Euro 2024 opener against Serbia a week on Sunday.

“There’s no doubt about our quality on the ball as a collective. Maybe against the teams that sit in it’s about being a bit mentally switched on,” Rice told Channel 4.

“I felt at times we were a little stretched, not as compact as we usually are. Inside I’m hurting and between now and the next game there’s work to be done.”

Rice insists England have ‘positives’ to take from Iceland loss

It’s hard to think of a worse way for England to end their warm-up schedule for the European Championships.

Gareth Southgate’s men looked lethargic for large spells of Friday’s match and, at times, looked more likely to fall further behind than to equalise.

However, Rice is insistent there were positives to take from the match and that, at the very least, some lessons will be learned.

“When we have that much of the ball, we have a couple of clear-cut chances and get beat 1-0 at home just before a Euros is not ideal,” Rice added.

“But there were a lot of positive performances. In the end, it becomes a frustration game, you’re chasing your tail a little bit and get caught on the counter-attack. It’s not ideal we lost but there’s a lot of learning curves you can build on as a team.”

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