England face Kosovo in their latest Euro 2020 qualifier on Tuesday night, but the Three Lions aren’t taking the field at Wembley in their latest encounter.
Instead, as part of the FA’s commitment to taking the England team back on the road around the country, they are in Southampton , at St Mary’s Stadium.
It is another part of the initiative that saw the side take on Costa Rica at Elland Road in a pre-World Cup friendly last year, and then head to Leicester City’s King Power Stadium for a friendly against Switzerland post-tournament.
The clash on the south coast marks England’s first return to Southampton in 17 years, when they met Macedonia on qualifying for Euro 2004 – and only managed a 2-2 draw.
Southampton’s managing director, Toby Steele, declared when the decision was made: “The club is honoured that the Football Association has once again chosen St Mary’s to host the national team.
“We have taken great pride in welcoming both the men’s Under-21s and the Lionesses in recent years, as well as being chosen as a host venue for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2021 tournament, and we are thrilled that the senior men’s team will now be returning as well.
“We look forward to what we hope will be a great occasion for the city, England’s supporters and Gareth Southgate’s team.”
Three Lions chief Southgate has made three changes to the side that beat Bulgaria on Saturday for the meeting with a Kosovo side ranked 120 in the world by FIFA.
Borussia Dortmund starlet Jadon Sancho is brought into the attack at Marcus Rashford’s expense, with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Chilwell both brought into the full-back positions.
Southgate talked up Sancho, the 19-year-old who is starring in the Bundesliga, ahead of the clash.
“He’s quite quiet when we’re around and thoughtful. But he is confident in his own ability – you can see that in the way that he plays.
“I think he’s one that, because of where he plays his club football, still goes under the radar a little bit in terms of the quality of his performances and the level that he’s playing at every week.
“So he’s not a player we’re looking to hold back. He’s real competition.”