England relegated in Nations League, raising concerns ahead of World Cup

Michael Regan / Getty Images Sport / Getty

England's preparations for this winter's World Cup took a hit Friday as Gareth Southgate's side suffered the ignominy of relegation to the Nations League's second tier.

Italy beat England 1-0 courtesy of an excellent Giacomo Raspadori effort. The 22-year-old settled a long ball with a sumptuous first touch and wriggled into a few yards of space on the edge of the 18-yard box before unleashing a sublime far-post finish.

Nations League A3 is as follows with one match remaining:

# Nation Played GD Points
1 Hungary 5 +5 10
2 Italy 5 -1 8
3 Germany 5 +2 6
4 England 5 -6 2

England's last goal from open play in a competitive fixture was against San Marino last November.

The only other national team to not score a non-penalty goal in the 2022-23 Nations League's four tiers is San Marino, which is positioned bottom - 211th place - of FIFA's world rankings. England is currently ranked fifth.

Harry Kane, Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling, and substitute Jack Grealish combined for two shots on target through 90 minutes against Italy. Brentford's Ivan Toney - who has five goals over seven Premier League appearances this season - wasn't included in the matchday squad despite getting his first England call-up last week.

England next faces Germany at Wembley on Monday. Germany was beaten 1-0 by Hungary in Leipzig on Friday, meaning Hansi Flick's men can no longer reach the Nations League Finals.

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England relegated in Nations League, raising concerns ahead of World Cup
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