Gareth Southgate admitted that England “didn’t click” in attack after they drew with Ukraine in a Euro 2024 qualifier.
Versatile Arsenal player Oleksandr Zinchenko gave the hosts the lead, but England equalised in the 41st minute after Harry Kane set up Kyle Walker for his first international goal.
“Very tough place to come,” the Three Lions boss said after the final whistle. “You could feel the atmosphere, a unique occasion.
“We controlled the game, we pacified a lot of that atmosphere by controlling the game. We didn’t create enough chances. If that is the case you have to make sure you don’t lose the game, so to come back from behind and get the point in terms of qualification very important.
“When you have that much of the ball you want to create more chances but the attacking play didn’t click today.
“Once you go behind you have a bit of a mountain to climb away from home but you have to remain calm. After we scored we controlled the game and I thought if anyone would win it it would be us, but we didn’t create enough chances to do that.”
England were dominant from early on, but failed to turn possession into opportunities. They were made to pay for their profligacy as they conceded for the first time in five and a half hours of action
Ukraine struck on the counter through a familiar face, with Zinchenko popping up in the box to stroke home Yukhym Konoplya’s cutback. But the visitors hit back just before the half.
Kane caught Mykolenko sleeping after sending a sumptuous ball over the head of the Everton left-back to find the Man City full-back, who scored his first goal twelve years after making his international debut.
“It was difficult to get in-between their midfield lines,” Southgate noted. “They got numbers back and a little too often our players were coming outside the block but when they have the quality like Harry it can sometimes pay off.”
Walker is the 450th different player to score for the England men’s team. With it being his 77th cap, he’s also waited longer than any other player to get his first goal for the Three Lions.
“He covered a very quick winger, he use the ball well and showed great composure for the goal. He is a very important player for our group,” Southgate added.
With an energised crowd in Poland behind them, Ukraine kept England scoreless in the second half and secured a huge point in their bid to qualify for Euro 2024.
England, who play Scotland in a friendly on Tuesday, sit top of the group with 13 points after five games. Ukraine have seven points after two games, while Italy are on three points having played twice.