Normally, June would be a quiet month for us managers. However this year was quite different. Due to several reasons. England had reached the European Nations League Semi-Final vs Spain. Because of the European Nations League, scheduling for the World Cup Qualifying has been squeezed into one year rather than over two years. So on the 10th June, we took on Slovenia at Wembley.
England 6 – 0 Slovenia 10/06/25 Attendance 99,000
In an oddly scheduled fixture, England took on Slovenia at Wembley. Coming just three days after Manchester United’s Champions League Final against PSG, Manager Martyn Moody was forced to rest half of the side that played in that game. Those names rested included the likes of Luke Shaw, Gareth Townsend and Graham Brock, with Declan Willibye coming off the bench. Thankfully, Fraser Alston scored a hattrick and Tom Field scored twice. Dan Heath scored the other from the corner. It was a complete performance from England. Slovenia only had five shots on goal in the whole match. England had 5 clear cut chance, 7 half chances and hit the woodwork 3 times. Frankly, it was a wonder that England didn’t score more…
And with that, it was onto the European Nations League. We had drawn Spain away from home again. We were looking to win the Nations League for the second time in a row…
Spain 1 – 2 England 13/06/25 Attendance 40,000
Here in Espanyol was an enthralling game. Spain and England played out one of the classics. With a much changed side, England took an early lead after just six minutes, Paul Sergeant bundling in from a corner. Just as England looked like they was settling into the game, disaster struck! Isco floated in a free kick from the right towards goal, McPike failed to collect and Jesus Vallejo slid the ball into an empty net. From then on, with England enjoying the majority of possession, chance after chance where passed up by both sides. What disrupted England was the number of injuries they collected. Kenwen Anthony, Luke Shaw, Graham McCarthy, Leo Triantafyllidis and Angel Gomes all picked up various non-serious injuries. It was only Kenwen Anthony that managed to stay on the pitch. England were down to nine men halfway through extra-time. However, Angel Gomes did manage to score the winner whilst he was on the pitch. Lining up a free-kick on the edge of the box, Gomes pinged a left-footed kick straight over the wall into the top corner past David de Gea. It was a majestic free-kick and the nine men of Engand held out to make it a deserved winning goal and advance to the Final…
Holland 1 – 5 England 17/06/25 Attendance 52,00
The Masacare of Amsterdam. That is what this game has become known as. England dominated the match. They proved that by being 2 nil up after just ten minutes, Triantafyllidis with both. After that, they battered Holland to the extent that Holland didn’t register their first shot on target until the 44th minute. It was when they scored however, through Richairo Zivkovic. England were 3-1 up at half time, Gareth Townsend scoring the other. And it was the Townsend show in the second half, as he scored twice to complete his hattrick and become the competitions top scorer with 9 goals. And along the way, help England to win the Europeans Nations Cup for the second time running.
With July came the start of pre-season and the Confederations Cup, which England were competing in for the first time. We were hoping to go all the way in the Confederations Cup and be the first debut winners ever. Firstly we were in Group B with Iran, Brazil and USA.
June 30th – July 6th Group Stage
Iran posed no problems for England in their opening group game. As soon as Alston and Raheem Sterling had put England 2-0 up after half an hour, the game was a procession. Alston added another after the 70th minute and England won comfortably. Up next was Brazil. What was perceived as a difficult game for England, proved a slightly different game. Triantafyllidis scored again after 14 minutes and then Townsend followed up with a second after 27 minutes. And that, as they say, was that. Finally, the USA. A strange game as it was the only game in which England dropped their concentration levels. They took the lead twice in this game through Alston and Willibye but where pegged back twice through Kim and Procter. Much as England huffed and puffed, they couldn’t break through once again. Either way England progressed as Group winners.
Mexico 0 – 5 England 10/07/25 Confederations Cup Semi-Final
Mexico were said to be no pushovers for England. A tough game, they said it would be. AS it turned out, England stormed past Mexico and made their way to the final. Field and Alston had put England 2-0 up after just twenty minutes. After half time, Alston, Gomes and Brock added three more to the scoreboard to make a very comfortable scoreline.
England 3 – 0 Spain 12/07/25 Confederations Cup Final
There has been the Stanley Matthews Final. Now there is the Gareth Townend Final. With Spain looking for revenge after the European Nations Semi-Final, they were straining every sinue to get themselves in front of the game. It all went slightly wrong when Gareth Townsend scored ater just ten minutes. Townsend was magnificent all game. He gave the Spanish centre-backs Marin and Bengotxea a torrid time. Townsend scored again in the 25th and 67th minutes of the game to a) give England a first ever Confederations Cup trophy and b) become England’s highest ever goalscorer, over taking Wayne Rooney on 65. That’s why its become known as Townsends Final.
Cyprus 0 – 4 England 16/07/25 GSP Attendance 15,500
The final game of England’s long and suffering summer was the next World Cup Qualifying game. They travelled to Cyprus to complete the summer. It was a tired first half from England, who led only through Aaron Nugent’s first goal for England in sweeping counter-attack. However it was the injury to Gareth Townsend that made the difference. Fraser Alston came on in his place and scored twice. Sterling completed the rout with a individual fourth and to round off the summer.
Man Utd’s Pre-Season
I’m not going to bore everyone with every single pre-season game/goal. So to make things easier, I’m going to include the pre-season fixture list. (Warning, I have played the next three games, so those scores will be included. Their reports will be included in August’s section).