Cole Palmer may have been a late addition to the squad, but the 21-year-old got to come off the bench last night to make his senior international debut, as England struggled to a 2-0 win over Malta in Euro 2024 qualifying. To be fair, it was a dead rubber match with England already assured of a spot.
Still, the likes of Harry Kane and Trent Alexander-Arnold were starting, as was our very own Conor Gallagher, who played the first half after overcoming some fitness issues earlier in the week. Palmer would play the final thirty, replacing Marcus Rashford on the left flank. Palmer doesn’t normally play on the left for us, but that sort of versatility is always welcome.
“[We had] lost (James) Maddison and Jude (Bellingham, to injury) so we wanted somebody who could play as a 10. Of course, Palmer’s playing wider at the moment for his club, but [...] we’d lost two attacking midfield players. So we’ve got a couple of players now who can fulfill that sort of role for these games.”
-Gareth Southgate; source: Evening Standard
Whatever the reason, congrats to young Cole Palmer: the first of many England caps, and hopefully many England wins as well.
Speaking of youngsters winning things at the international level, World Cup champion Enzo Fernández was on the losing end, as Argentina lost, 2-0 at home to Marcelo Bielsa’s Uruguay. Oops!
It’s the first game Argentina have failed to win since the opening match of the 2022 World Cup, ending a run of 14 straight wins, and it’s the first time they’ve even conceded a goal since the World Cup final.
So just a little hiccup then. Enzo played the full 90.
(Meanwhile, Brazil lost again, this time to Colombia, 2-1. That Thiago Silva recall is getting closer by the game. And late last night, Moisés Caicedo played the whole game and Kendry Páez got 70 minutes as Ecuador drew with Venezuela, 0-0.)