Date: 4 June 2019
Time: 18:00 BST, 1:00 PM EST
Venue: Stade D’Honneur, Salon-de-Provence, France
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England U20s look to rebound from a loss in their opening group round fixture to Japan today against Portugal. Portugal is also coming off of a loss, as they dropped their opening fixture to Chile.
Portugal sent their U19 team to Toulon this year, so England might have a slight advantage as they are currently using the U20s instead. Japan brought their U22s to the tournament, so perhaps the loss to Japan wasn’t as unexpected as many in England thought it was.
Leeds United’s Tom Pearce started and went 73 minutes against Japan, with Jamie Shackleton an unused substitute. If previous tournaments are anything to go by, Shackleton might get a chance in either this match or the next, as the coaches seem to rotate heavily in the group stages. Pearce started the first game last year, but wasn’t relied on nearly as much as the tournament wore on.
England will probably need to win this match to have a chance at defending their title and advance to the group stages, and Portugal will be looking to get a result as well. As expected, the Portugal team is dominated by players from Benfica, FC Porto, and Sporting Clube de Portugal, with the vast majority coming from Lisbon’s Benfica. Familiarity, however, didn’t seem to help them against Chile.
So will England get the job done? Or will Portugal send England to another defeat? Let us know what you think will happen in the comments!