Two of England’s best players in their hard-fought 2-2 draw with Belgium (ENG 2-2 BEL).

Two of England's best players in their hard-fought 2-2 draw with Belgium (ENG 2-2 BEL).

England’s winning streak came to an end on Saturday when they lost to Brazil, but Gareth Southgate’s young team recovered to draw 2-2 with Belgium at Wembley. It was their last game before the announcement of the Euro 2024 squad in May, therefore it was an opportunity for marginal players to make an impression. For the Three Lions, two young people in particular—Jude Bellingham and Kobbie Mainoo—stepped out.

Jude Bellingham, already a regular for club and country, continued to impress in the center of the park. The Real Madrid midfielder showcased his ever-growing maturity, dictating the tempo of the game with his composed passing and intelligent movement. Bellingham’s ability to break up play and launch attacks was crucial in England’s fightback after conceding twice in the first half.

The midfielder also scored the late goal that secured the three lions the draw.

2. Kobbie Mainoo

Manchester United’s Kobbie Mainoo, making his full international debut after a cameo appearance against Brazil, looked right at home on the big stage. The 18-year-old midfielder displayed a fearless confidence, driving forward with pace and purpose, linking well with the attackers. Mainoo’s tireless work ethic and willingness to take risks suggest a bright future for England.

With several first-choice players out injured, this match served as a valuable opportunity for Southgate to assess his options. Both Bellingham and Mainoo have given the manager a welcome selection headache, proving their ability to perform at the highest level. Their performances will undoubtedly be considered when Southgate finalizes his Euro 2024 squad.

While the result may not have been a win, England can take heart from the way their young players performed. Bellingham and Mainoo, along with others who impressed, have shown they have the potential to contribute significantly at the Euros this summer.

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