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Southgate confident Nations League will provide tough test

England face Spain and Croatia. Credit: PA

England manager Gareth Southgate is confident everyone will get behind the UEFA Nations League campaign which features "high-quality" fixtures against Spain and Croatia.

In the new format, England have been drawn into Group Four of League and the UEFA competition is designed to allow teams to play against those who are similarly ranked - and will offer some nations who do not qualify for Euro 2020 via the normal route a path to the play-offs.

Southgate is confident the new venture can prove a success, both on and off the pitch.

"The whole concept of this tournament is you play high-quality and competitive matches, so that criteria is fulfilled by the group we are in," the England manager said on Sky Sports News.

"Croatia we haven't played for a while so we are looking forward to that and Spain, of course, are one of the best teams in the world, so it will be good to test ourselves in those games.

"Everybody is still getting to grips with what that (winning the Nations League group) will mean, and I am sure there will be a bigger focus after the World Cup.

"But we like the concept of fewer friendlies and the concept of games against high-level teams, I think that is really important."


Wembley to host seven Euro 2020 games including Final

Credit: PA

London will host seven games during Euro 2020 after UEFA handed the four fixtures scheduled for Brussels to Wembley on Thursday.

UEFA decided to reallocate the three group-stage games and one last-16 game originally given to the Belgian capital because of delays in the project to build a new 60,000-capacity Eurostadium on the site of Heysel.

Cardiff's Principality Stadium and Stockholm's Friends Arena - the venues for last season's finals of the Champions League and Europa League, respectively - had hoped to pick up Brussels' games.

However, UEFA opted for Wembley, which has already been chosen as the venue for the semi-finals and final.

Glasgow's Hampden Park had been hoping to stage the tournament's opening game but that honour has gone to Rome's Stadio Olimpico.


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