09 September 2020 02:32

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Kalvin Phillips and Conor Coady make England debuts

ST HELENS-BORN footballer Conor Coady has made his England debut tonight against Denmark in the UEFA Nations League. The Wolves captain was handed his first senior England call-up last week and was given a starting spot by manager Gareth Southgate tonight. Whether I'm here or not, I just like watching England play. To think about making my debut for the England national team and doing something like that would be amazing. England's trip to Copenhagen had long been circled by Southgate as the perfect place to experiment, to go back to a formation that served his team so well in the 2018 World Cup. Every second must count for the head coach in the coming months, all avenues need to be explored.

Nothing says experimentation also like the sight of two debutants and Southgate hoped that playing three central defenders would see Conor Coady, the captain of Wolves, and Kalvin Phillips of Leeds come to the fore. Conor Coady (L) and Kalvin Phillips (R) made their England debuts against Denmark Coady started in a defensive three whilst Phillips partnered Declan Rice in midfield The way Coady swept those balls forward gave early hope that England would be direct and dynamic and it would bring the qualities of so many of their jet-heeled forwards, not to mention the similarly rapid Alexander-Arnold, into play. 'I'm here to help,' said Coady, winning international honours for the first time since leading the Under-20s at the 2013 World Cup in Turkey. It took six minutes for Phillips, the first player from Leeds to gain a senior England cap for 16 years, to get his first touch. By then, Denmark had managed to take control and England's play had become devoid of charm.

Southgate has followed his progress closely and had no concerns about calling him up; he doesn't give out cheap appearances and Phillips, the 24-year-old who has yet to kick a ball in the Premier League, was here firmly on merit. Phillips showed impressive glimpses in the game and showed he can play at international level He was substituted after 75 minutes, making way for another debutant in Jack Grealish – Ainsley Maitland-Niles also came on — and would have felt frustrated. Phillips gave two glimpses of what he is about, early in the second half, with a wonderful first time pass out to Harry Kane and then Kieran Trippier but he found it difficult, not least as he was playing alongside Declan Rice, who was doing a similar job. The 'Yorkshire Pirlo' made way for fellow debutant Jack Grealish in the 75th minute Everything was tentative, the passing was safe to the point of slovenly and it led to those laborious passages were Eric Dier, a right-footed central defender playing on the left, kept feeling the need to go back to Jordan Pickford. Southgate knows 4-3-3 works for England, he probably knows what individuals will fit the positions, too, without needing to see them play in it again.

Conor Coady made his debut for England against Denmark After a complicated build-up, England played out an uneventful 0-0 draw with Denmark in Copenhagen as points were shared in this Nations League contest. Gareth Southgate gave starting debuts to Wolves' Conor Coady and Leeds' Kalvin Phillips, while Jack Grealish and Ainsley Maitland-Niles made their their international bows from the bench. But there was little drama on the pitch itself with England's best chance falling to captain Harry Kane in stoppage time. After his late error against Iceland jeopardised England's victory at the weekend, Gomez responded with a much improved defensive performance here. Typically vocal even on his England debut, the Wolves captain took up a familiar role at the heart of a back three and played several promising long passes in the early moments of the match.

With Ben Chilwell and Luke Shaw unavailable, Trippier continued to be asked to play out of position on the left, operating further forward at wing-back this time. Found more space in the second half and had England's best chance when rounding Schmeichel in stoppage time only to see his shot cleared off the line. Sterling did test Kasper Schmeichel with a long-range effort in the second half and almost but Kane through on goal too but not much came off for him. Although Mount's introduction did not appear to be a dramatically attacking substitution given that he came on for Sancho, his arrival coincided with a much improved performance from Southgate's side. Dropped deeper into midfield when Jack Grealish came on for his England debut.

England host Wales in an international friendly on October 8 at 8pm before taking on Belgium at Wembley in the Nations League on October 11 (kick-off is at 5pm). Phil Mealey, who co-wrote Early Doors with Craig Cash, revealed the news on Twitter, writing: "Really sad news that Rodney Lichfield aka Old Tommy passed away peacefully in his sleep Saturday aged 81, having been poorly for some time. Really sad news that Rodney Lichfield aka Old Tommy passed away peacefully in his sleep Saturday aged 81, having been poorly for some time. Litchfield played ill-tempered pensioner Tommy in the BBC sitcom, and also appeared in Coronation Street in 2007 as scamming grandad Wilf Morton. View photos Rodney Litchfield played Grandad Morton on Coronation Street. Actress Christine Bottomley, who starred in comedy Early Doors with Litchfield, tweeted in tribute: "Sorry to here [sic] one of our Earlydoors family has left the building x will watch me some outtakes tonight I think and remember our dear friend #RodneyLitchfield #OldTommy will miss you mate x [sic]" Sorry to here one of our Earlydoors family has left the building x will watch me some outtakes tonight I think and remember our dear friend #RodneyLitchfield #OldTommy will miss you mate x ❤️ pic.twitter.com/liIezRwQds — Christine Bottomley (@ChrissyBotto) September 7, 2020 And comedian Justin Moorhouse, who worked with Litchfield on Channel 4 sitcom Phoenix Nights, wrote: "Rest in Peace Rodney.