A 2 week international break has arrived, with some interesting fixtures to look forward to.
This International break will be extremely crucial for the managers to set up and build their teams for the fast approaching Fifa World Cup which starts in November. There are some interesting matchups to offer, and managers will be looking to clear up the headaches regarding team selection ahead of the World Cup.
Here are some of the mouth watering Nations League clashes to take place this month:-
England vs Italy 24th September
Netherlands vs Belgium 26th September
England vs Germany 27th September
Spain vs Portugal 28th September
An important thing to note is that this is the last chance for managers to assess their assets and come up with a conclusion regarding squad selection for world cup, which makes this 2 week break a very crucial phase for the top teams competing for the coveted title in Qatar later this year.
Here are some interesting takeaways from the squads announced by European teams for Nations League matches:-
- Spain: The Spaniards announced their squad in a very eye catching style, with the boss Luis Enrique riding a bike in the video shot for squad announcement. Call ups have been handed to 20 year old winger Nico Williams and Betis striker Borja Iglesias. Ansu Fati and Sergio Ramos have missed out from the squad, with Dani Olmo, Mikel Oyarzabal and Aymeric Laporte not available due to injury layoffs.
- England: Gareth Southgate has announced a squad featuring familiar faces. Brentford marksman Ivan Toney has earned his first national call up after displaying an array of wonderful performances in the Premier League. Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho continue to miss out on the English squad. Kalvin Phillips has pulled out of the squad due to a shoulder problem with Jordan Henderson replacing him. Eric Dier has also made a return to the side.
- France: Didier Deschamps has called up a few youngsters due to the unavailability of some regulars like Karim Benzema, Paul Pogba, Ngolo Kante, Lucas Hernandez, Presnel Kimpembe, and Kingsley Coman. Olivier Giroud and Ousmane Dembele have been called up. Frankfurt striker Randal Kolo Muani and Monaco teammates Benoit Badiashile and Youssouf Fofana have earned their maiden call ups to the French squad.
- Portugal: Fernando Santos has named a squad featuring pretty much expected names. PSG midfielder Vitinha has been included following an impressive start to the season. Benfica winger Rafa Silva announced a shock retirement from international football earlier this week and hence hasn’t been included in the squad.
- Germany: Hansi Flick has also named a very expected squad for the Nations league matches. The only new entrant in the squad is Armel Bello Kotchap who has earned a call up following a string of impressive performances for Southampton in the English top flight. Marco Reus has pulled out of the squad after suffering an injury in the recently concluded RevierDerby, Benjamin Henrichs has been named as his replacement.
Club Football resumes after the international break with a bang. Some high intensity clashes are lined up for the football fans to relish. Premier league will be staging 2 derbies in the space of 2 days. The North London derby is scheduled on 1st October followed by the Manchester derby on 2nd October. Napoli will be facing Roma in the Seriea on 1st October.