FA Announce England’s Euro 2016 Warm Up Schedule


England will play home matches away from Wembley Stadium for the first time in over nine years after the Football Association announced friendly fixtures against Turkey, Australia and Portugal.

England boss Roy Hodgson will use the matches as a final opportunity to prepare his side for this summer’s European Championships held in France. With Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium hosting the first of these games on the 22nd of May as England take on Turkey, eyebrows have been raised surrounding the safety of the fixture given previous issues. Sunderland’s Stadium of Light then plays host for an encounter with Australia, before England return to Wembley to face Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal.

With England’s initial squad for the Championships having to be submitted by the 12th of May, there is still time for certain individuals to play their way into Hodgson’s thinking, whether it be by returning to full fitness, or finishing the season strongly with their club sides.

Jack Wilshere is certainly a man that England fans will be hoping can regain his fitness before the end of the campaign. Having broken his leg in pre-season, Wilshere will be further motivated by the news that Hodgson will pick him if he returns to the Arsenal set up before the domestic season ends.

The likes of Luke Shaw and Daniel Sturridge find themselves in similar situations, while players fighting to win a place in the squad include Leicester City’s Danny Drinkwater and Arsenal forward Danny Welbeck.

By the time the travelling party head to France, they will be hoping to have a fully fit squad to select from, ahead of the first England match against Russia on June 11th. Coral currently offer Euro 2016 betting odds of 10/1 for England to win the tournament for the first time in their history, with the likes of hosts France, as well as Germany and Spain ahead of them in the pecking order.

After a strong qualifying campaign in which they won all ten of their matches, England will be hoping to continue this form, all be it against a much more difficult calibre of teams.

England’s performances in France could well have a huge bearing on the future of Roy Hodgson as manager, with an expectant nation hoping to finally reach a major final.

If the FA chooses to continue with a home grown manager, the likes of Gary Neville, Alan Pardew and Eddie Howe look like being the most likely candidates, with a distinct lack of English managers currently in the top level of the game.

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