While Gareth Southgate’s success has been built on performances in major tournaments, the Three Lions went winless during the last set of international fixtures and were booed off at times.
Italy, of course, denied England in the Euro 2020 final and boast a fine record against them on home soil. Not since 1961 have they won in Italy and a major improvement will be needed on Friday given the crisis that threatened to emerge for England earlier this summer.
The penultimate game before the World Cup, Southgate has little time to raise morale.
Here’s everything you need to know about the game.
Date, kick-off time and venue
The UEFA Nations League game is set for a 7.45pm BST kick-off on Friday September 23, 2022.
The San Siro in Milan will host.
Where to watch Italy vs England
TV channel: The game will be broadcast on Channel 4.
Live stream: All 4 (free with a subscription) will provide a live stream.
LIVE coverage: Follow all of the action with Standard Sport’s dedicated match blog.
Italy vs England team news
Given the close proximity of the World Cup, it’s hard to imagine Southgate tinkering. Kalvin Phillips is injured, meaning there’s a strong chance of seeing Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham paired together in midfield, although there could well be starts for Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw despite their lack of action at club level.
Aaron Ramsdale will likely deputise for the absent Jordan Pickford in goal, while Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling and John Stones look certain starters.
For the Italians, Lorenzo Pellegrini and Matteo Politano have pulled out of the squad, meaning Roberto Mancini will likely have to turn to some less established names.
Italy vs England prediction
This is one is likely to be cagey. England cannot risk getting played off the park in what has been a difficult atmosphere for them over the years.
Head to head (h2h) history and results
Italy wins: 12
England wins: 9