England player ratings v Denmark: Trent enforces Southgate Out clamour as Kane, Bellingham struggle

Lewis Oldham
England Denmark
England's starting XI against Denmark.

Gareth Southgate’s failed Trent Alexander-Arnold experiment could be a massive contributing factor to England’s imminent Euro 2024 exit. That was sh*t…


Jordan Pickford
‘s No.1 had a couple of nervy moments as he flapped at a cross and was beaten to the ball by Christian Eriksen when off his line. But for the goal, there was nothing more that Pickford could do as Morten Hjlulmand’s sublime strike from range bounced off the inside of the post and into the net.

The players in front of Pickford were fortunate that their endless number of lapses in possession did not lead to more clean-cut chances in front of goal, as most of Denmark’s on-target attempts went straight at the ‘keeper. One of England’s better performers, but that’s really not saying much.


Kyle Walker
One of barely a handful of good moments from England’s perspective came via Walker’s advancing runs. He made a loose pass from Jude Bellingham look somewhat decent as he caught Victor Kristensen napping to nip the ball away from the Denmark man to play in Harry Kane for his goal.


John Stones
Decent but not sparkling. Looks a far cry from the player he is when at his roaming best in his hybrid role for Man City. One of many cases of an immense talent not being given the license to shine by the overly defensive-minded manager in the dugout.


Marc Guehi
England’s best player. He did a great job of handling Manchester United’s Rasmus Hojlund, whose inexperience and rawness was just as evident for Denmark as it was at Old Trafford for much of his debut season.

Guehi did not have it all his way and had to make a brilliant recovery block to prevent a huge chance after being dispossessed in a dangerous area. But he did so admirably and was one player who stepped up when most others went missing.

One of the main talking points heading into this tournament surrounded Guehi being England’s weak link. But his first two appearances suggest he’s the opposite, with Gareth Southgate having far more serious problems which require immediate attention if his side are to reach the latter stages of Euro 2024.

READ: 16 Conclusions on England drawing with Denmark: Southgate out, awful Alexander-Arnold, rubbish Rice


Kieran Trippier
Even in an unnatural position, he’s rarely left wanting when defending in an England shirt. He’s currently doing a job for Southgate and is rightly pushing forward and hogging the flank when Foden drops deep, but does not offer a threat and the Three Lions desperately need Shaw back to full fitness if this system is to have any hope of working later in the tournament.

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Trent Alexander-Arnold
Did nothing to justify Southgate’s insistence on playing the Liverpool right-back in midfield. An awful pitch did not help his renowned passing range but he resembles a deer in the headlights in this unfamiliar position and is far from assured with any of his work. He was dragged off after 53 minutes and the change should have happened earlier.

His ineffective display should surely end a Southgate experiment doomed to fail from the get-go and has exposed the manager’s tactical frailties. His baffling use of Alexander-Arnold will contribute to his final chapter as England’s boss being a downer.


Declan Rice
Similar to Stones, Rice resembles a footballer playing with shackles around his ankles in this system after he clearly showed during the Premier League run-in that his best position is as a No.8.

But Southgate has never had trust in his defence and as long as he’s England’s manager (which thankfully, will not be for much longer), Rice will be held back in this current role.

Saying that, like the rest of his England team-mates, Rice was pretty hopeless in possession and the scoreline would have been ugly were they playing a more clinical opponent.


Bukayo Saka
His first-half performance against Serbia was the Arsenal winger at his scintillating best, but he faded in that game after being taken off and only impressed in flashes.

He was probably a 6/10 while others were 4/10 or worse, but Saka does not seem to be fully recovered from his injury issues as he’s showing restraint when running at defenders and giving his opponents an easier ride than they are used to.


Jude Bellingham
The Real Madrid sensation pretty much beat Serbia single-handedly in England’s opening game, but the imperious 20-year-old slipped to the same level as his underperforming teammates as he let the game pass him by without making much of an impact.

Did not come close to taking the game by the scruff of the neck as he did against Serbia and was pretty subdued throughout. It’s been a gruelling season for the youngster and there were signs this evening of this campaign catching up with him.

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Phil Foden
The clamour for Newcastle United’s Anthony Gordon to start on the left
enhanced after Foden failed to get into the Serbia game.

The Manchester City standout was better this evening, but all of his good moments came through the centre of the pitch. It’s almost as if he should just be played there. If only his manager cottoned onto that way of thinking…

Came close when he struck the post from range in the 55th minute and in an ideal world, he’d start as a No.10 with Bellingham deeper alongside Rice, while Gordon/Eberechi Eze can be used on the left.


Harry Kane
Kane showed his good and bad side against Denmark…

His emergence as England’s Erling Haaland sparked backlash for some reason, but he showed why his work needs to be focused in the 18-yard box when he scored with his first chance to break the deadlock in a typically clinical fashion.

But signs of Kane reverting to type were clear from kick-off as he had more touches in the opening couple of minutes than he did in the whole first half against Serbia while dropping deep. This continued as the pressure immediately built on England after going in front.

A frustrating theme of England in major tournaments is they drop back as soon as they take the lead and Kane’s insistence on getting involved in midfield *once again* ensured they had no out ball when in trouble.

And Kane contributed to Denmark’s equaliser as an empty-headed pass – to God knows – from on the edge of England’s box found Morten Hjlulmand, who let rip from range for a deserved leveller.

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Conor Gallager (on 53rd min)
His first act saw him booked for a late foul after leading a solo press and got no better after as the one-dimensional terrier and favourite of Southgate did his case to replace Alexander-Arnold in the starting XI no good at all.


Eberechi Eze (on 68th min)
Won a couple of fouls in the attacking half, but was unable to alter the course of the game as England’s woefulness continued after Southgate’s bold triple change with 20 minutes to go.


Ollie Watkins (on 68th min)
Southgate’s uncharacteristically bold roll of the dice in the latter stages saw Kane, Foden and Saka replaced.

This switch reeks of a desperate manager hoping his increasingly frustrated critics would gloss over his negative ineptness and concentrate on him having a go in the latter moments with these changes. Unfortunately, he has no such luck with #SouthgateOut quickly trending on social media after full-time.

Of the three players to come on at this point, Watkins was the most effective as a trademark in-behind run from a pass by Bellingham and his subsequent shot forced Schmeichel into a decent save. A positive sign and evidence he is a useful alternative option when Kane up front on his own is not working.


Jarrod Bowen (on 68th min)
The West Ham star really impressed after replacing Saka against Serbia as he further established himself as Southgate’s go-to right winger if the Arsenal man gets injured. He was less good here as he could not make a difference.