West Ham United's Declan Rice, Tomáš Souček and Vladimír Coufal all start as England defeat Czech Republic

Rice, Soucek and Coufal

Declan Rice, Tomáš Souček and Vladimír Coufal all started at Wembley Stadium on Tuesday evening as England defeated Czech Republic 1-0 in the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D decider.

The trio were all making their third starts in the summer international tournament, with Rice withdrawn by England manager Gareth Southgate at half-time, having played his part in recording a third clean sheet in three group games.

The 22-year-old’s Club midfield partner Souček came closest to putting an end to that run with two instinctive efforts in the space of five first-half minutes, but saw his first shot blocked by Harry Maguire before the second, reacting to Luke Shaw’s headed clearance, whistled just past the post from the edge of the area.

As it was, England forward Raheem Sterling grabbed the only goal of another tight affair involving the Three Lions, heading home Jack Grealish’s clipped cross with 12 minutes on the clock.

Sterling had earlier hit the post with a lobbed effort inside two minutes and Jordan Henderson later had an effort ruled out for offside, while at the other end Tomas Holes forced Jordan Pickford into one fine stop and Tomas Pekhart dragged a shot just wide late on.

Rice and Soucek

All three Hammers put in solid showings during the course of the 90 minutes, with Coufal providing two crosses, two successful tackles, two interceptions and a match-high six clearances for Czech Republic against a menacing England attack.

Souček’s box-to-box qualities were well showcased in his two shots, two key passes and two aerial duels won, while Rice – on this occasion his teammate's opposite number – still produced a tackle, interception and clearance before being rested from the interval by Southgate.

Soucek, Coufal and Rice

Both teams had already sealed qualification from Group D prior to kick-off, but following workmanlike displays, the result sees Rice and England claim top spot in the pool, setting up a Round of 16 match at Wembley next Tuesday (29 June) evening.

There, they will face a European heavyweight in one of France, Germany, Portugal or, in more unlikely circumstances, Hungary.

Souček, Coufal and the Czech Republic, meanwhile, must await the revelation of their next opposition, having slipped into third place behind Croatia – also winners on Tuesday evening, 3-1 against Scotland – by virtue of goals scored.

Club and Country