Czech Rep vs England ratings: Saka stars

Czech Rep vs England ratings: Saka stars

Assessing how the players performed at Wembley as England beat Czech Republic 1-0 to finish top of Group D.

England player ratings

Jordan Pickford – 8

A spectator for the opening 30 minutes before producing a flying save to deny Holes. Touch wood, but the Everton goalkeeper hasn’t put a boot or glove wrong in the tournament so far.

Kyle Walker – 6

Back in the starting team after missing out against Scotland and twice showed excellent composure in his own penalty area as the Czechs threatened. But like Reece James before him on Friday, could surely offer more attacking intent and zest.

John Stones – 7

Another touch wood, but his defending has been excellent this summer. Made the critical block in the melee from the corner when Kane had been out-jumped for the initial ball in. On a slightly less positive note, it has to be asked whether he can pass the ball on – or, better still, forward – quicker and if his late withdrawal was injury-related.

Harry Maguire – 8

Very solid on his first start in six weeks and produced the wonderful pass which ended with Kane’s first shot on target of the tournament. Could have won a second-half penalty and showed a willingness to drive forward with the ball that has been frustratingly absent from his fellow defenders this summer.

Luke Shaw – 6

England’s defence were rightly criticised for their sluggish passing against Scotland, but Shaw’s through-ball for Sterling’s chip to hit the post was every bit as good as Maguire’s for Kane. After that, however, Shaw faded into anonymity. England’s full-backs have been flat so far.

Declan Rice – 5

Lost Soucek for the shot from the edge of the area which his West Ham team-mate hit narrowly wide and replaced at half-time for Jordan Henderson.

Kalvin Phillips – 5

Man of the match against Croatia but subdued in the 135 minutes of tournament play since. Moved into a deeper role directly in front of England’s centre-halves following Rice’s exit before England’s late switch to 4-3-3.

Jack Grealish – 7

Raheem Sterling celebrates with Jack Grealish after opening the scoring against Czech Republic

Image:
Raheem Sterling celebrates with Jack Grealish after opening the scoring against Czech Republic

Lovely chip to the far post for Sterling to head in England’s opener, but his contribution after the break diminished. His capacity for winning free-kicks would be infinitely more valuable if only England didn’t insist on hitting the first man with their set-pieces. Looked forlorn at being hauled off with a decent chunk of the game remaining – it’s hardly as if he needed a rest.

Raheem Sterling – 7

Raheem Sterling celebrates after giving England the lead against the Czech Republic

Image:
Raheem Sterling celebrates after giving England the lead against the Czech Republic

England’s biggest goal threat in the tournament by a distance. Inches away from giving the hosts a very early lead, instead becoming the third England player in as many games to be denied by the woodwork, even before tucking in his header.

Bukayo Saka – 8

England’s driving force to turn possession into penetration. A surprise inclusion ahead of Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho, but justified his inclusion after barely 10 minutes when he instigated England’s opening goal with a quick-footed break through midfield. In large part due to Scotland’s teenager star, this England has surely played his way into England’s last-16 starting XI.

Harry Kane – 6

At least there’s something now to build on. Better build-up and hold-up play than in either of England’s opening games, and also finally registered his first two shots on goal during the tournament. But a lack of sharpness remained throughout and concerns about the England’s captain form will last for at least another week.

Substitutes

Jordan Henderson – 6

Energetic and occasionally creative after his half-time introduction but it’s difficult to see how it could be enough to earn a place in England’s starting eleven next week after so long on the sidelines.

Marcus Rashford – 6

On for the final 23 minutes but couldn’t make any sort of impact.

Jude Bellingham – N/A

Introduction triggered a change of formation as England tried to take the sting out of the game with a three-man midfield. Through no fault of Bellingham’s, it didn’t work.

Tyrone Mings – N/A

Unfortunate to lose his place given his displays against Croatia and Scotland and on for the final ten minutes due to the late injury concern for Stones.

Jadon Sancho – N/A

Well at least he won’t have sat out the entirety of Euro 2020.

Czech Republic player ratings

Tomas Vaclik – 7

Raced off his line early on to try and claim Shaw’s through ball for Sterling, only to misjudge the pass and get lucky when the forward’s shot hit the outside of the post. Made up for that though with an impressive reaction save to prevent Kane from doubling England’s lead, before having to be alert at his near post to turn behind Shaw’s deflected cross.

Ondrej Celustka – 6

In the right place, at the right time to make several important interceptions at the heart of the Czech back line.

Vladimir Coufal – 7

The West Ham right-back could have done more to prevent Grealish getting the space to cross for Sterling’s opener, before a nasty-looking kick on the playmaker’s Achilles just before half-time.

Tomas Kalas – 7

The Bristol City central defender caught Kane with a leading elbow early on and was turned by Kane in a tight space in the box, only for his ‘keeper to save his blushes with an excellent stop.

Jan Boril – 6

Poor headed clearance gave Kane an early look at goal, before being lucky to get away with what seemed a clear trip on the edge of the area on Saka, who continued to torment the left-back as he did in the Europa League last season for Arsenal against Slavia Prague.

Booked for tripping Saka on the hour-mark. And will now miss his side’s last-16 clash.

Vladimir Darida – 6

Right-wing cross almost brought his side level, only for Soucek’s close-range strike to be blocked. The skipper was then given a deserved rest just past the hour-mark.

Tomas Holes – 6

An early reducer on Grealish, who he then failed to stop for England’s opener. But a long-range strike then forced an excellent diving stop from Pickford, before being replaced late on.

Lukas Masopust – 6

Good tracking back to help out his right-back, Coufal, including putting in one crunching tackle from behind on Grealish. Hooked just past the hour-mark to prevent him being suspended for the last 16.

Jakub Jankto – 6

One of the Czechs’ livelier attacking performers in the first half, although that is not saying much, before being hooked at the break.

Tomas Soucek – 7

The West Ham midfielder went close to equalising on the half-hour mark, only for his shot to be blocked by a posse of England players in the six-yard box, before going even closer to netting when his shot curled inches past the left-hand post.

Patrik Schick – 5

Invisible first-half display from the Czechs’ main man, before unsurprisingly being replaced with a quarter of an hour left to play.

Substitutes

Petr Sevcik – 6

Replaced Jankto at the break.

Alex Kral – 6

On just past the hour-mark.

Adam Hlozek – 6

On just past the hour-mark.

Tomas Pekhart – 6

Replaced the disappointing Schick with a quarter of an hour left to play and almost brought his team level with a low shot that fizzed just past Pickford’s near post.

Matej Vydra

The Burnley striker came on for Holes as the Czechs went with two up front to try and salvage a point late on.

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