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Phil Foden again a spare part as England miss Harry Kane and Bukayo Saka against Brazil

March 23rd, 2024

There are plenty of alternatives to an injured Harry Kane and an injured Bukayo Saka although against the biggest beasts in the world game, this night once again demonstrated that there are no substitutes for England’s two most potent attackers.

That was the sense as Gareth Southgate’s team fell to a rare Wembley defeat – their first in 21 games and the first in any competition since they went down to France in the World Cup quarter-final in December 2022. It was two depleted sides finding their way through to the end of another exhausting season, and a lot more about who was missing when it came to the game’s decisive moments.

There was no Neymar Junior for Brazil and in his stead the game’s only goal was the first in the international game for the 17-year-old prodigy, Endrick. England gave up too many chances to a Brazil side fighting disillusionment at home after a run of three successive defeats in World Cup qualifiers. For all the impressive strength in depth in attack that Southgate has at his disposal, England had no Saka to drive at a deep-lying defence. Nor did they have Kane to snaffle those fleeting chances that come so seldom in games such as these.

Kane is also out of the Tuesday friendly against Belgium with that ankle injury picked up in his most recent Bayern Munich appearance. Saka is already back at Arsenal. Southgate talked up the opportunity to try something different on this night and he will no doubt do the same again on Tuesday with another senior player, Kyle Walker, likely to be unavailable. Anthony Gordon, Ezri Konsa and Kobbie Mainoo all made senior debuts on Saturday night and the conclusions were easy to draw.

There are some players England cannot afford to be without. Only John Stones and Declan Rice from England’s core of untouchables played the full game, the former taking the armband as the third captain of the night. It had first passed from Walker to Harry Maguire when the Manchester City man was unable to shake off an injury picked up in the first 20 minutes. Maguire had been substituted by the time Vinicius Junior got in behind England yet again after 80 minutes, this time exacting a cost for all that smart running.

Endrick, on as a substitute, was in the right place to get the loose ball when Jordan Pickford saved and so the game was decided. It was the kind of moment that can convince a teenager he is destined for greatness on this, his first senior game outside of South America. Endrick is launched upon Europe in a Real Madrid shirt next season. Among his future team-mates, Jude Bellingham once again looked regal on the ball, an imposing physical presence with magic feet. Vinicius was the game’s most effective attacker. Rodrygo was also sharp.

Endrick is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring the winning goalEndrick is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring the winning goal

Endrick is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring the winning goal – Reuters/Carl Recine

Another problem for Southgate was the impact of Phil Foden, who might have been expected to flourish in this company given his current form for City but was lost out on the right side of the front three. Foden has been one of the Premier League season’s most influential players and there must be an anxiety that he could end up the spare chair come the summer European Championship.

It is Bellingham who occupies the No 10 shirt, and the position that comes with it, and Foden works around him. He did not get a single touch in the Brazil penalty box all night. His 44 touches in the game were well down on his City season average of 72.

Southgate said before the game that a third of the longlist of players he might have selected were unavailable through injury – and one refusal – and for all the talent that did turn up, it felt that way. Afterwards Southgate would say that with 10 minutes to play and a team that had to adapt to absentees and then the substitution of its captain in the first half, a draw looked a good return against the greatest football nation on earth.

England had given up chances before the goal but a loose header from Lewis Dunk found the head of Andreas Pereira and the Fulham midfielder’s ball offered Vinicius a run in behind the defence. Endrick scored with the rebound.

Brazil had neither of their two first-choice goalkeepers, Alisson Becker or Ederson, available, the former picked out by the television cameras among the away supporters. They often opted to go long from the feet of Bento, who deputised. Lucas Paqueta accumulated a whole set of fouls before he was at last booked. Yet the West Ham player’s performance in midfield, as well as that of Newcastle’s Bruno Guimaraes, was crucial to Brazil. Paqueta hit a post in the first half and generally rode his luck between the inevitable booking and his second-half substitution.

There were lots of fouls on Bellingham, as befitting a player so talented that even the Brazilians feel that brute force might be the best way of stopping him. Even so, when the young Englishman chose to clean out Bruno in the 13th minute it was a moment that offered cause for concern. Tournament football does not lend itself to cheap early bookings for players who like to operate on the edge.

It was Bellingham’s ball to Conor Gallagher in the first half that led to the best chance for Ollie Watkins, Kane’s understudy for the night. On such moments are reputations made and the Aston Villa striker never quite got there first to take the opportunity.

England had given up the best openings of the first half – that Paqueta shot against the woodwork, a Maguire error that let in Raphinha, Vinicius with a sight of goal after Paqueta had spun Gallagher. Brazil had played a 4-2-4 shape in their build-up, trying to get players in wide positions in one-on-one battles.

Southgate was obliged to substitute Bellingham just after an hour and although England’s attack was twice refreshed with Jarrod Bowen and then Marcus Rashford, it never quite carried the threat required. The Endrick goal was a reminder of just how fine the margins are, and with Vinicius still on the pitch perhaps the deck was stacked in Brazil’s favour. He is the kind of player this Brazil side could not afford to be without – and those who occupy a similar status for England were not around to make the difference


England lose to Brazil: As it happened…


09:44 PM GMT

‘Hosts lost way after Bellingham went off’


09:25 PM GMT

More from Gareth Southgate in his press conference

“We’re playing a top team. Chances are going to be limited. Perhaps we had the chances from set-pieces to capitalise on one of them.

“I was pleased with the players that went in. We need to find out about them. I thought Ollie did a good job. Didn’t get that clear chance on goal you might want. A lot of his work was very good.

“[Cole] Palmer and [Jordan] Henderson trained with the group today. Belgium played with a different XI [in their first game of the break] so they’ll be a bit fresher.

“A brilliant experience for the players [on Tuesday].

“I know there will always be a negative reaction to losing but I thought with 15 minutes to go the crowd were with the team, they could see inexperienced players going in and doing well.”


09:24 PM GMT

Anthony Gordon speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live

“Tonight was the best day of my life. I envisioned it a bit different with a win and a goal. I thought we were the better team but we lacked that cutting edge that they had at the end.

“This is my long-term dream I have had. To achieve it means everything to me.

“I haven’t just envisioned it in the last couple of years, I have imagined it in the garden [as a kid] recreating Rooney and Gerrard’s goals – it’s just an amazing moment.

“We have to find a way of killing teams and putting them to the sword when we get the chance.”

On what he could do better: 

“Score! When you come off you think you could have done better.

“The chance in the first half with the volley, if I am being hard on myself, I would have liked to score it.”

On the Euros: 

“You can never truly be in this England squad with the talent around you. I have got so long to go as I haven’t showed them what I can do to a full extent.”


09:23 PM GMT

Player ratings

Mike McGrath has given his views on how the England players fared this evening. Remember you can have your say on tonight’s game in the comments section at the bottom of the blog.


09:20 PM GMT

Kane to return to Bayern

In his press conference, Gareth Southgate has just confirmed that Harry Kane will not play against Belgium on Tuesday night and will return to Bayern Munich.


09:17 PM GMT

Gareth Southgate update on Kyle Walker

“We don’t know yet, he’s feeling something. He’s not a player that gets injured often so he’s not certain what it is. We’ll have to assess him.”

Gareth Southgate consoles Kyle Walker as he goes off injuredGareth Southgate consoles Kyle Walker as he goes off injured

Gareth Southgate (left) is unsure what the extent of Kyle Walker’s injury is – Tolga Akmen/Shutterstock


09:11 PM GMT

England manager Gareth Southgate speaking to Channel 4

“There were some very good performances – it was a top-level game. We’ve controlled long parts and had as many as attempts as them on goal. It’s just that ruthless moment that decides the game. We’ve had players making debuts, having few caps, there were some important performances out there.

“Anthony [Gordon] was excellent at both sides of his game. At 15 minutes to go there was a lot of changes and at that point the crowd were really pleased with the performance. When you lose the game, it turns negative but we’ve got to put context on that as there were lots of good things in the performance.

“It’s a classic game against a South American team. In a qualifier or competition there would have been more cards given and that affects the flow of the game. We expected it. And played through that intense pressure well and played from the back well. I’m not unhappy with a lot of that performance.”


09:10 PM GMT

FT verdict

It has been a tricky and bruising night for England who have deservedly lost to Brazil. The fixture may have only been a friendly but every game is critical for Gareth Southgate in the countdown to this summer’s European Championships and this was a missed opportunity to put down a marker against one of world football’s leading nations. Of greatest concern for England was the number of mistakes they made that could have been far more costly with Harry Maguire, Ben Chilwell and Lewis Dunk all at fault. Dunk’s poor header allowed Brazil the chance to finally break the deadlock and in a major tournament England will be punished if they make errors like this. There was also an injury to Kyle Walker while Jude Bellingham was fortunate not to also get hurt given the rough treatment he received. It has been a chastening night with Phil Foden and Ollie Watkins struggling. There is, unfortunately, much to ponder.


09:06 PM GMT

End of the run

Tonight marks England’s first defeat at Wembley in 21 games. The last time they lost at home was in October 2020, when they were beaten by Denmark in the Nations League.


09:04 PM GMT

Setting records

Endrick’s goal made him the youngest senior international goalscorer at Wembley at the tender age of 17 years and 246 days. Our very own Matt Law wrote a piece earlier this week about how Endrick nearly joined Chelsea. He will join Real Madrid in the summer, when he will turn 18.

Endrick celebrates his first international goalEndrick celebrates his first international goal

Endrick (pictured) became the youngest senior international goalscorer at Wembley – Catherine Ivill/Getty Images


08:56 PM GMT

Full time

Rice swings it in and Brazil clear. They win the ball and break forward. Endrick ends up with a chance to score his second one-on-one with Pickford but he hits it straight at the England goalkeeper.

The full time whistle is then blown and Brazil win 1-0 thanks to 17-year-old Endrick’s first international goal.


08:54 PM GMT

90+4 minutes: England 0 Brazil 1

England have a late, late corner. One last chance.


08:54 PM GMT

90+3 minutes: England 0 Brazil 1

Time running out for England.


08:52 PM GMT

90+2 minutes: England 0 Brazil 1

Just two added minutes remaining.


08:51 PM GMT

90 minutes: England 0 Brazil 1

There will be four added minutes. Can England find an equaliser?

England have been guilty of going through the motions in the second-half here. The tempo has dropped and they have paid the price with Brazil deservedly taking the lead through their new 17-year-old Real Madrid wonderkid Endrick (who my colleague Matt Law profiled so prophetically before the game). It was a poor goal to concede with a weak header by Lewis Dunk putting England in trouble and their defensive line all over the place. There will be so many talking points after the game but one, unexpected one, has been how quiet Phil Foden has been. Given his stunning form for Manchester City Foden has been a real disappointment tonight. We expected him to shine but he has been virtually anonymous.


08:49 PM GMT

88 minutes: England 0 Brazil 1

Late double change from Brazil as Bremer and Pablo Maia replace Wendell and Vinicius Jr.


08:42 PM GMT

GOAL! 17-year-old Endrick scores

Brazil are ahead. The ball is played in behind the England defence and Vinicius Jr runs onto it. Pickford makes a good one-on-one save but it falls to Endrick, who slots home his first international goal at the age of just 17. England are adamant that Vinicius Jr was offside but he was not so the goal stands. What a moment for the young man.


08:39 PM GMT

78 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Double change for Brazil as Savio and Luiz come on for Guimaraes and Raphinha.


08:35 PM GMT

74 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

England are making a double change as Mainoo is coming on for his England debut. He is replacing Gallagher whilst Rashford comes on in place of Gordon.

Kobbie Mainoo (right) comes on for his England debutKobbie Mainoo (right) comes on for his England debut

Kobbie Mainoo (right) comes on for his England debut – Glyn Kirk/Getty Images


08:31 PM GMT

70 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Gallagher goes down wanting a penalty but nothing given. Not enough contact there to warrant a penalty.

Conor Gallagher goes downConor Gallagher goes down

Conor Gallagher (bottom) wants a penalty but nothing given – Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Brazil are making a double change as Pereira and 17-year-old Endrick come on for Paqueta and Rodrygo. Endrick will join Real Madrid in the summer.


08:27 PM GMT

67 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Gareth Southgate is making a triple change as Bowen, Dunk and Gomez are replacing Bellingham, Chilwell and Maguire.

It is triple change for England with Jude Bellingham among those replaced – much to the relief of Real Madrid, I suspect, given some of the tackles he has faced from Brazil which have certainly annoyed the England bench. Indeed it has been reported by Channel Four that Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink, part of Gareth Southgate’s coaching staff, angrily spoke to the Portuguese fourth official Fabio Jose Costa Verissimo in the tunnel at half-time. The pair were seen to be deep in conversation and Hasselbaink was not happy. With Harry Maguire also going off it means England have their third captain of the evening as John Stones takes the armband. Kyle Walker started as captain before going off injured. Passing the captaincy around is far from ideal for England.


08:25 PM GMT

64 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Paqueta attempts an audacious first-time curler from the right-hand side of the box into the top corner but it narrowly goes wide. That was close and would have been an unbelievable finish.

At the other end Gallagher finds Bellingham at the far post but his header back across goal misses the target. Bellingham is suffering from a bit of cramp.

Jude Bellingham suffering from crampJude Bellingham suffering from cramp

Jude Bellingham (bottom) suffering from cramp – Glyn Kirk/Getty Images


08:21 PM GMT

61 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Liverpool and Brazil number one goalkeeper Alisson, who is currently out injured, is in the stands at Wembley with his family.

Unfortunately the paper aeroplanes are out in force again at Wembley with one even landing by Gareth Southgate’s feet in the England technical area. It really is an oddity. This may be a friendly but it is England against Brazil and both teams have gone for it rather than going through the motions. We may not have had a goal – yet – but it easily could have been a high-scoring match. It begs the question of who goes to such a prestigious England games and thinks it is a good idea to throw paper aeroplanes? Each to their own, I guess. Meanwhile the injured Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson – who is Brazil’s number one – has been spotted among the Brazil fans while we even had a marriage proposal (which was accepted!) on the big screen at half-time.


08:20 PM GMT

60 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

A developing theme in the game is how much Brazil are targeting Jude Bellingham. They have clearly identified him as England’s danger man and are taking no prisoners in their approach. Bellingham has been fouled at least five times but, typically, is not shirking the challenge – and the hefty challenges. No-one touched the ball more than him in the first-half (40) and he continues to carry England’s threat. Their best hope of scoring is through the 20-year-old although Real Madrid will be watching this through their fingers for fear that he gets injured. In saying that the tempo has dropped in the second-half and the game looks a bit more like a friendly.

Jude Bellingham runs with Rodrygo pressing himJude Bellingham runs with Rodrygo pressing him

Jude Bellingham (left) has been fouled numerous times tonight – Glyn Kirk/Getty Images


08:19 PM GMT

59 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Chilwell tries to find Foden with a cutback but it is intercepted. The ball comes out to Stones outside the box, who takes it first time but his strike goes wide.


08:18 PM GMT

57 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Chilwell blocks a Raphinha shot and it goes behind for a Brazil corner, which they take short. They eventually get the ball in but it is cleared away.


08:15 PM GMT

54 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Vinicius Jtr sends a cross in from the left but none of his teammates are there to meet it. But Chilwell puts it behind for a corner. It is sent to the far post but Vinicius Jr cannot get it under control and Gordon clears.


08:11 PM GMT

51 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

There have been so many fouls in this game, very uncharacteristic of a friendly. It is no wonder England are getting annoyed with these cynical fouls. In the space of just 50 minutes Paqueta has committed six fouls.


08:10 PM GMT

50 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

England have the first corner of the second half as Bellingham’s cross is headed behind. Foden takes an inswinger which Brazil just about manage to clear away.

Brazil try to clear the ball away from their own boxBrazil try to clear the ball away from their own box

Brazil just about get the ball away from danger – Alastair Grant/AP

Moments later Stones is fouled by Paqueta, who is running an almighty tightrope. Rice sends a delivery to the far post, where Gordon is on hand to meet it. He makes decent contact but it is straight at Bento.


08:05 PM GMT

Second half

We are back under way at Wembley.


07:59 PM GMT

Paying tribute to El Tel


07:52 PM GMT

HT verdict

It has been a chastening first-half for England. Yes, they could have led with Ollie Watkins missing a golden chance but – in truth – they are fortunate not to be at least two goals down to a weakened Brazil side who have been very impressive going forward. Lucas Paqueta, despite his serial fouling, has been the best player on the pitch while one of the big talking points will be a horrible error by Harry Maguire that let Raphinha in on goal. The Barcelona forward should have scored and it is the kind of mistake that could cost England dearly at the European Championships. Little wonder Gareth Southgate is making notes on the touchline. There is plenty to discuss in the home dressing room. There will also be concern at Manchester City after Kyle Walker suffered an apparent hamstring injury and with Arsenal to play at home next Sunday.


07:50 PM GMT

Half time

That is it for the first half, which has been intriguing and a good watch but no goals as of yet. Brazil have had the biggest chances, including Paqueta’s strike that hit the post. All square at Wembley at the break.


07:47 PM GMT

45 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

There will be two added minutes.


07:47 PM GMT

44 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

England swing in a corner from the left which nearly ends up with Foden at the back post but it goes behind for another corner from the other side. Brazil clear it away.


07:45 PM GMT

42 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Maguire is so, so lucky. He tries to play the ball back to Pickford but gets hardly anything on it. Raphinha gets to it first but he drags his shot wide. Another big chance goes begging for Brazil.


07:43 PM GMT

41 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Gordon cuts in from the left and curls one towards the far corner, but Bento gets down well to his left to parry the ball away.


07:42 PM GMT

40 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Paqueta needs to be careful here as he fouls Bellingham. He is already on a yellow and you would not have been surprised if had he not already been booked he might have seen yellow there.

Lucas Paqueta continues to be the best player on the pitch – even if he has also been a serial fouler – and was unlucky not to give Brazil the lead, hitting the post with his shot. There is a lot of food for thought for Gareth Southgate with England being cut open far too easily by Brazil especially down England’s left-hand flank. With Ben Chilwell now having to push forward and join the attack, after Kyle Walker was substituted, it has made England far more vulnerable. It is fair to say England are also really missing Harry Kane and Bukayo Saka. England are complaining again after yet another foul by Paqueta with Jude Bellingham leading the appeals to the Portuguese referee Artur Ribeiro Soares Dias.


07:39 PM GMT

37 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

England have a corner after Gordon’s shot is deflected behind. England play it short and eventually Foden has an effort from just outside the box, but his effort is too close to Bento and it is an easy save in the end.


07:37 PM GMT

35 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Brazil hit the post. After an atrocious initial effort, moments later Paqueta has the ball back at his feet in the centre of the penalty area 10 yards out. His strike hits the post and England eventually clear. Big let-off for England there.


07:36 PM GMT

34 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Paqueta is into the book after taking down Stones.


07:35 PM GMT

33 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Paqueta finds Rodrygo with a superb lofted pass on the right-hand side of the box, but he cannot get the contact right to find Vinicius Jr in the centre and it goes behind for a goal kick.


07:33 PM GMT

31 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Watkins tries to find Bellingham with a pull-back from the left-hand side of the box but it is intercepted crucially for Brazil.


07:32 PM GMT

30 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Gomes fouls Bellingham inside the Brazil half. Bellingham is imploring referee Artur Dias to book Gomes for a number of fouls but the referee does not agree. Rice’s delivery is cleared way.


07:30 PM GMT

28 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Gordon cuts in from the left and his curling effort towards the far corner is deflected behind for a corner by Bruno. The ball comes back to Chilwell at the edge of the box and like the previous occasion he wastes the chance as he mis-hits it past the far post.


07:26 PM GMT

25 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Chilwell finds Maguire at the back post, whose header is deflected behind for a corner. It is cleared to Chilwell at the edge of the box, but his effort would be better suited to a rugby game than football.


07:25 PM GMT

23 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

From an England free kick on the right, Rice has it in space at the far post. His shot is blocked but moments later England have another free kick in a dangerous area, a few yards outside Brazil’s box.


07:22 PM GMT

20 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

This is not a huge surprise as Walker is going to be unable to continue. He is going to be replaced by Konsa, who is on for his debut.

Gareth Southgate and his assistant Steve Holland are deep in conversation in the England technical area. They are discussing whether Kyle Walker can continue with the England captain having hurt himself in clearing Vinicius Junior’s shot off the goal-line. Walker has now come off and walked straight down the tunnel which will be a concern for his club, Manchester City. Safe to say he will not be involved in Tuesday’s friendly against Belgium and there will be worries that he might be out of next Sunday’s huge clash at home to Arsenal.

Interestingly Southgate has decided to bring on Ezri Konsa for his debut at right-back instead of using Joe Gomez. It will be a big test for Konsa who plays the position for Aston Villa but is certainly not as quick as Walker and is up against the rapid Vinicius Junior. Good luck.

Kyle Walker goes off injuredKyle Walker goes off injured

Kyle Walker (left) goes off injured – Glun Kirk/Getty Images


07:20 PM GMT

18 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Big chance for England. Gallagher finds Watkins inside the Brazil box but there is a touch just before he gets his shot away, which results in his effort sailing over the bar. Good defending.


07:19 PM GMT

16 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Walker surprisingly is back on and is in the thick of the action. Vinicius Jr goes past him in the penalty area and goes down, but there was not enough contact for a penalty.

Moments later Brazil win it high up the pitch and Rodrygo has an effort inside the England box, but he drags his shot wide. He should have done better there.


07:17 PM GMT

13 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Bellingham is the first man booked tonight after a rash tackle on Guimaraes. You should not be seeing those tackles in a friendly.

Before play is resumed Walker has gone down and the medical staff are on the field. Manchester City fans will be concerned ahead of their game against Arsenal in the Premier League a week tomorrow.

Medical staff attend to Kyle WalkerMedical staff attend to Kyle Walker

Medical staff attend to Kyle Walker (centre) – Mike Hewitt/Getty Images


07:15 PM GMT

12 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Brazil should be ahead. Paqueta plays a delightful through ball after getting away from Gallagher. Vinicius Jr gets on the end of it and is one-on-one with Pickford. He gets his shot past Pickford but it does not have a lot of pace on it and Walker gets back to make the clearance.

Vinicius Jr shoots towards goalVinicius Jr shoots towards goal

Vinicius Jr misses big chance to give Brazil an early lead – Mike Hewitt/Getty Images


07:11 PM GMT

9 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Rodrygo has Brazil’s first effort of the night. He finds himself space in a central area and dribbles towards the England box. He shoots with his left but Pickford gets down to his left to make the save.

Tactically it is an interesting opening few minutes for England who are pressing incredibly high up the pitch against Brazil. So much so that Jude Bellingham is almost playing as a second striker up alongside Ollie Watkins and with Conor Gallagher then pushing up from midfield. It is a really positive, aggressive approach from Gareth Southgate which is good to see. England have already forced a couple of free-kicks close to the Brazil penalty area – through Gallagher. The danger is Brazil, despite being weakened, are not bad at passing the ball through the press as they have just shown with Rodrygo getting the first shot away.


07:08 PM GMT

6 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

We have a carbon copy of the incident just a few moments ago as Gallagher wins a free kick in the same spot as the last one after a foul once again by Paqueta. Chilwell takes the free kick but the offside flag has gone up against Maguire.

Conor Gallagher fouled by Lucas PaquetaConor Gallagher fouled by Lucas Paqueta

Conor Gallagher (front) fouled by Lucas Paqueta – Carl Recine/Reuters


07:06 PM GMT

4 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

Foden whips in the free kick towards the far post. Brazil goalkeeper Bento comes out but makes no contact as it flies past the post.


07:05 PM GMT

3 minutes: England 0 Brazil 0

England have a free kick on the right-hand side, just a few yards outside the Brazil box after Gallagher was fouled.


07:02 PM GMT

Kick off

We are under way at Wembley.


07:01 PM GMT

El Tel remembered

Wembley is paying tribute to Terry Venables with a minute’s applause. His family are at Wembley tonight.

Wembley pays tribute to Terry VenablesWembley pays tribute to Terry Venables

Wembley pays tribute to Terry Venables – Carl Recine/Reuters


06:58 PM GMT

Ex players in the house

David Seaman, Alan Shearer and Gazza are all at Wembley tonight cheering on England.


06:55 PM GMT

Kick off fast approaching

Both sides have emerged from the tunnel at Wembley. It is time for the national anthems.


06:54 PM GMT

England favourites?

There will be huge focus on Jude Bellingham this evening. Not that he will be fazed by facing Brazil – and not least because their star players Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo are his team-mates at Real Madrid. In the absence of Harry Kane, Bellingham is even more the main man for England and it is something he will thrive on. Despite the injuries and absences in Gareth Southgate’s squad England – perhaps for the first time ever – go into this game as favourites to beat Brazil. Even though it is a friendly it will be a significant result if England do win – as Southgate has pointed out. I expect them to come out and play and beat Brazil for only the fifth time in 27 attempts. Prediction? England 3 Brazil 1.


06:53 PM GMT

Reminder of the team news

England: Pickford, Walker, Stones, Maguire, Chilwell, Rice, Gallagher, Foden, Bellingham, Gordon, Watkins.

Subs: Konsa, Johnstone, Dunk, Branthwaite, Gomez, Toney, Bowen, Rashford, Maddison, Mainoo, Ramsdale.

Brazil: Bento, Danilo, Fabricio Bruno, Lucas Beraldo, Wendell, Joao Gomes, Bruno Guimaraes, Lucas Paqueta, Raphinha, Vinicius Jr, Rodrygo.

Subs: Rafael Monteiro, Leo Jardim, Murilo, Bremer, Richarlison, Yan Couto, Pepe, Andre Trindade, Douglas Luiz, Andreas Pereira, Savio, Endrick, Galeno, Ayrton Lucas, Pablo Maia.


06:50 PM GMT

Ollie Watkins speaking to Channel 4

“It’s against tough opposition, but I am looking forward to it. You have to make the most of it when you put an England shirt on.

“I think there is always competition in every place. There are so many good players in the squad.

“There are world-class players trying to fight for the same spot, I am just going to play my game.

“Players need to get used to how I play. I play differently to Harry Kane. It takes a bit of understanding and communication. Over time you learn to play with different players.”


06:47 PM GMT

Gordon on debut


06:44 PM GMT

Brazil not in yellow?

There has been a lot of questions as to why Brazil are not in their iconic, traditional yellow shirt and blue shorts this evening. It just does not seem right. There is certainly no colour clash with England who are in their new (controversial) white home shirt. The reason for Brazil being in blue, it appears, is because they also have a new yellow home jersey which they want to unveil in the friendly after this one – away to Spain on Tuesday with the match played at the Santiago Bernabeu, the home of Real Madrid. As much as Brazil have built up facing England – and it is a prestige match for them despite up to 14 players being out – it appears playing Spain in Madrid, the home club stadium for Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo, is a bit of a bigger game for them.


06:40 PM GMT

England out to warm up


06:36 PM GMT

Captain Walker

It is an interesting to give Kyle Walker the captaincy in the absence of Harry Kane and Jordan Henderson. There may have been an expectation that it would go to Harry Maguire but Gareth Southgate has selected Walker who, of course, wears the armband for Manchester City this season. It is well known in the England camp that the 33-year-old is desperate to be in the reckoning when it comes to being the England captain and covets the role. But it may raise some eyebrows given the off-field controversies he has been involved in. Obviously that should not influence his selection but being England captain? Personally I would have gone for Declan Rice.


06:29 PM GMT

Raise the flag

Placed on the seats at Wembley this evening are these ‘Raise The Flag’ banners:

Detailed view of the 'raise the flag' banners placed on seats inside the stadium prior to the international friendly match between England and Brazil at WembleyDetailed view of the 'raise the flag' banners placed on seats inside the stadium prior to the international friendly match between England and Brazil at Wembley

Raise the flag banners – Mike Hewitt/Getty Images


06:26 PM GMT

England manager Gareth Southgate speaking to Channel 4

On Ollie Watkins replacing Harry Kane:

“They are different players and we have got to have an appreciation of the way Ollie Watkins plays and not ask him what he does to do the same as what Harry does.

“It is our job to bring out their [players’] best asset and operate in the areas they want to operate – we have to adjust our game to Ollie.”

On what he has asked Anthony Gordon to do: 

“Really what he has done for his club all season. He does not have to do anything different to that.

“He has been exciting with the ball and has trained well all week, he looks like he has been with us forever.”

On the new England kit controversy: 

“I have not tracked it closely. I understand it has been in the media, but look I spoke at length about it yesterday. The most important thing on the England shirt is the Three Lions.

“At times we have had the St George’s flag and at times we haven’t. In my head you cannot change the St George’s flag.

“So, anything else is artistic but it has been a long way away from my concentration.”


06:21 PM GMT

Gomes starts for Brazil

There are three Premier League players starting for Brazil tonight, including Wolves’ Joao Gomes. Our very own John Percy has written about the impact Gomes has made at Wolves since his move from Flamengo to Molineux.

Wolves' Joao Gomes in training with BrazilWolves' Joao Gomes in training with Brazil

Wolves’ Joao Gomes (pictured) starts for Brazil tonight – Jack Thomas/Getty Images


06:17 PM GMT

Chance for Watkins and Gordon

The England team is out and with Harry Kane injured it is Ollie Watkins who gets the nod to lead the line at centre-forward against Brazil – and deservedly so. There is also a debut for Anthony Gordon and, in fact, more great work from my colleagues Mike McGrath and Matt Law who wrote about the expected team this morning. As ever they got it spot-on – even reporting that Kyle Walker would be captain in the absence of Kane. It is clearly a huge opportunity for Watkins and Gordon but also for Conor Gallagher who will play alongside Declan Rice in the centre of midfield. Who partners Rice at the Euros is one of the biggest issues facing Gareth Southgate. Can Gallagher grab his chance?


06:14 PM GMT

Team news from both sides


06:13 PM GMT

England kit controversy

The build-up to this match has been dominated by Nike’s decision to have a multicoloured St George Cross on the England jersey for the Euros, which has created a huge backlash. The FA are to introduce an overhaul of how kits are approved.

Nike's multicoloured St George Cross on the England jerseyNike's multicoloured St George Cross on the England jersey

Nike’s multicoloured St George Cross has created a significant backlash – Nike/PA


06:06 PM GMT

Euro 2024 predictor

With Euro 2024 coming up in just a few months time, you can have your say on how you think the tournament will pan out with our Euro 2024 predictor.

To play click here.


06:02 PM GMT

England team news


06:02 PM GMT

Brazil team news


05:59 PM GMT

Tribute to El Tel

Tonight England will pay tribute to Terry Venables, who died on November 25 of last year. England have not played since his death so tonight’s game marks the first chance during an England game to pay their tribute to ‘El Tel’.

The England matchday programme pays tribute to the late Terry VenablesThe England matchday programme pays tribute to the late Terry Venables

England will pay tribute tonight to Terry Venables – Eddie Keogh/Getty Images


05:55 PM GMT

Fancy a flutter?

England friendlies have long been losing credibility, but today’s game against Brazil offers a genuinely exciting chance to match up against these South American stars. You can back your predictions for the game on these best betting sites.


05:53 PM GMT

England in the building


05:49 PM GMT

Match preview

England’s preparations for Euro 2024 step up this evening as they take on Brazil at Wembley. England have three more games after tonight before the start of the Euros; Belgium on Tuesday and then friendlies against Bosnia and Iceland in June. England’s opening game of the tournament is against Serbia in Gelsenkirchen on June 16.

With his contract expiring in December, England manager Gareth Southgate has been linked with the Manchester United job, but he has insisted his full attention is on England going into the Euros.

“I think I’ve answered this every time I’ve sat with you. My focus is the European Championship,” he said in his press conference on Friday.

“If we did something, a contract here [with England] before, everybody would be saying, ‘Why are you signing a contract before a Euros where you’ve got to prove yourself’.

“I’m certainly not going to speak to anybody else ahead of that. I never have. I’ve been here eight years in the job. I wouldn’t entertain speaking to anybody else when I’m in a job.”

England manager Gareth Southgate walking up the steps at WembleyEngland manager Gareth Southgate walking up the steps at Wembley

Gareth Southgate (pictured) has insisted his full attention is on England going into the Euros – Eddie Keogh/Getty Images

Southgate confirmed yesterday that Bayern Munich striker and England captain Harry Kane will miss tonight’s game and could also miss Tuesday’s game against Belgium. Jordan Henderson and Cole Palmer will also miss tonight, but could be fit for Belgium.

Tonight provides the opportunity for England to test themselves against quality opposition, with Brazil currently sitting fifth in the FIFA rankings.

“We have started doing that over the last few years [winning games against top sides consistently],” Southgate said.

“I’m reading that we’ve only beaten Brazil four times out of 26 games, something like that.

“There are lots of matches against big opponents that we don’t have outstanding records against that this team have managed to beat – Italy twice, Spain. It’s another opportunity for us to put a marker down and create a bit more history for these boys.

“We’re going to be tested in every aspect of our game and that’s going to be a great challenge for us.”

Team news to follow shortly.

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