Dele Alli has 'slim chance' for England v Panama, says Gareth Southgate

Ruben Holloway
June 23, 2018

Preparations are under way for Sunday's penultimate Group G match against Panama, with the Manchester City centre-back surely a shoo-in to start in Nizhny Novgorod.

"There is a squad of 23 names on the sheet", Southgate told talkSPORT.

Gareth Southgate is considering dropping Raheem Sterling against Panama, judging by a note spotted at England training.

"So, we're not going to be wildly different to that".

"I'd say he goes by people more than Ballack did". We will do our job against any team we face.

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"He responds very well to the kind of coaching we do and the discipline I've always had in my teams".

- Panama will be the 38th different nation England have faced at a World Cup - of the previous 37, they have only lost their first meeting against five; United States of America and Spain in 1950, Uruguay in 1954, Hungary in 1962 and Italy in 1990.

Belgium found it tough indeed to break through Panama until Dries Mertens produced a bit of magic, so including Rashford from the start makes flawless sense for England.

Speaking to Press Association Sport after the game, Alli said: "Hopefully I am okay".

The promising star, who has made just six Premier League starts for Chelsea, has demanded a more important role if he is to remain at Stamford Bridge in 2018-19.

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England captain Harry Kane scored twice in his side's opening World Cup victory against Tunisia.

It is a big talking point and has cropped up in relation to Ireland's football and rugby teams in the past, too - is it the job of reporters to present the news as they see it or to pull together for the national good?

"But we have prepared for this and all of us on the national team have worked hard to take on this challenge".

"We've got key men in key areas that can go and get goals at any time, so if we just keep the ball, keep to our style that we've been playing throughout the build-up to the tournament and especially in the first game and especially the first half I think we'll be fine". They have also been eager to make themselves available for interview: such was the deluge of players willing to speak to the BBC after the game, the Beeb barely had any time to do some analysis.

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