Serbia – England: One cool and plenty of nervous Englishmen | EUROtoday

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Among the numerous lovely English chants, a traditional is presently well-liked once more: “Hey Jude”. The English sang the Beatles hit on the way in which to the stadium, they usually sang it within the stadium when the sport had solely been going for quarter-hour. It was a typical Jude Bellingham objective. The Englishman is 20 years outdated, however there are such issues, typical Jude Bellingham objectives.

Bellingham, sometimes, sprinted into the penalty space at full velocity, cleared his opponent (pretty) on the way in which to the ball and headed the ball in. 1:0 for England in opposition to Serbia. “Juuuude, Juuuude,” shouted the English followers within the Schalke Arena as he was nonetheless celebrating. And then “Na na na nananana, nanana, hey Jude!” That could possibly be the soundtrack for the English on the European Championships in Germany. And Bellingham a star of this event.

The former Dortmund participant, who in his first yr at Real Madrid gained the championship and the Champions League and – maybe much more importantly – thrilled the Madrid followers, is a phenomenon. He is an influence footballer, a power of nature. “Bellingham is always initiating something,” mentioned former world-class midfielder Cesc Fàbregas on British tv. “Every time he drives England forward.” Bellingham was typically hit within the head with an arm, and the Serbs repeatedly stepped on his foot. He received right into a battle with Filip Kostić. Once he volleyed the ball throughout the pitch again to a defender. Everyone within the stadium noticed and seen that this Bellingham is one thing particular. At occasions as cool as James Bond. The English followers love him.

In the 86th minute, Gareth Southgate substituted him, and the English followers once more shouted “Juuude, Juuude” and sang “God save the King”. (Perhaps quickly additionally “God save the Ten”, the quantity 10 worn by Bellingham.) There was only one downside: it wasn't actually the time to rejoice. Because the sport wasn't determined but. Not determined in any respect.

Serbia dominated the second half. A sport that the English, the large event favorites after France, had totally underneath management, slipped away from them. In numbers: 79 p.c of ball possession England
till the twentieth minute. At the top of the sport, possession was nearly equal. And now they’re questioning in England whether or not they have something to fret about regardless of the 1-0 opening victory. Self-doubt accompanied the Three Lions at all times, as a result of they’ve messed issues up in some unspecified time in the future since 1966. That's why English followers think about earlier than the event how issues will go flawed afterwards. And regardless of the victory, the doubts are again.

Serbia started like many underdogs start a European Championship match: by defending. Only they weren’t significantly good at it. “Serbia can concede goals at any time against any opponent,” wrote journalist Uroš Jovičić in GuardianAnd that's the way it appeared, Serbia was underneath an excessive amount of strain, it took greater than 5 minutes to even get a single go to a teammate. For a short while, England loved the sport, a 3-0 or 4-0 win appeared attainable. But then the English turned unusually passive, they simply waited for the break. And the Serbs down on the pitch and particularly these up within the stands received their hopes again.

The ambiance within the stands in Gelsenkirchen that night was considerably completely different from that of earlier European Championship matches, a extra aggressive one. The Serbs booed throughout “God Save the King” and the marginally outnumbered English then booed throughout the Serbian nationwide anthem. That was solely a minor factor. The police made this sport a so-called high-risk sport as a result of they anticipated hooligans from each nations. There was solely gentle beer within the area, however folks nonetheless laughed about that.