After their disappointing performances so far, and talk of unrest in the camp, England go into tomorrows (23rd June) game against Slovenia, their last in the group stage at the World Cup, knowing that a win will still see the team advance to the knockout stages.
Slovenia on the other hand need only a point to advance, an impressive feat considering they are the smallest nation in South Africa.
, England coach, has already confirmed that will take the place of suspended at centre-back. is still out injured.
David James is likely to keep his place in goal, whilst there are universal questions being asked whether midfieldershould start. ’s inclusion in the starting line-up may also be considered.
After an injury to his rib in the previous game, Slovenia’s centre-back Marko Suler is doubtful. Striker Necj Pecnik broke his ankle against U.S.A. and therefore is now ruled out of the World Cup.
If England loses, then they will be out of the World Cup. However the last time England did not win their first two World Cup games, it was “Italia ‘90”, and they went on to reach the semi-finals.
They will need Wayne Rooney to be in top form though. He has gone ten and a half hours since last scoring for his country.
Slovenia have won seven out of their last nine games though, since a defeat to England at Wembley.