England and Scotland legends Glenn Hoddle and Gordon Strachan make Euro 2020 clash predictions and pick out key players
ENGLAND and Scotland legends Glenn Hoddle and Gordon Strachan have had their say ahead of Friday night's epic Euro 2020 showdown.
The rival nations go head-to-head in a real Battle of Britain in the second Group D clash – with both teams in very different positions after one game apiece.
England won their tournament opener – for the first time ever – with a 1-0 win over Croatia.
But Scotland crashed to a 2-0 defeat against Czech Republic, with Steve Clarke's side now almost certain to need a result against their auld enemy.
Hoddle called England's start 'perfect', while Stachan was underwhelmed by Gareth Southgate's squad saying they 'weren't that good'.
Strachan went on to say Scotland were 'unlucky' to lose to Czech Republic, while Hoddle blamed their profligacy in front of goal.
And ahead of Friday's 8pm kick-off at Wembley, Hoddle – tipping England to win 2-1 – told Betfair: “In football terms we’ve got nothing since 1966 to blow our trumpet about… let the country get carried away.
"Gareth is a very steadfast guy and he’ll have the team in that mode, too.
"The good thing for England is there’s more to come without a doubt.
“It’s going to be a tight game but the pressure’s on Scotland to open up a bit more.
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"If they get a draw they’ll really be under pressure against Croatia in the last game.
"I think the game will be a little more open than if the result had gone the right way for the Scots.
"The game might be heated at times and I think they’ll give us even more of a test than Croatia.
“It could become quite feisty… it will get a bit feisty, if you’re playing tiddlywinks against Scotland it gets feisty, that’s the combative energy this fixture brings up.
"The team that controls their emotion will end up playing better and winning.”
On the combative edge, Strachan agreed with Hoddle – but plumped for a 'truly exciting' 0-0 draw.
The Scot added: "Southgate and his team will be wary, just as they were of Croatia.
"Fans are different altogether. It’s not about football with fans, it’s about superiority.
"England have got that superiority complex in basically everything.
"I don’t know if it adds an extra stride to the players. It will make for a good game.
“I imagine it will be heated, most likely the petulant screaming and shouting at the referee. Not to mention some meaty challenges.
"The crowd is affecting players and making them more emotional – that is when you have to get your yellow yards, to curb the emotion.”
Both Hoddle and Strachan claimed Jack Grealish will be the difference-maker – despite the fact he failed to start England's win over Croatia.
When asked who Southgate's dangerman is, Hoddle said: "If Grealish is playing I’d say him, but I don’t think he’ll start.
"I think he’ll have a big impact if he comes on from the bench.
"Scotland will be quite deep so we might need someone to run at people and draw fouls. If he plays, he’s the man.
"There’s a bit more to come from Foden, he could be somebody that really comes alive on the day.
"It’s one of those scenarios where Grealish or Foden could have a big impact.”
Strachan added: "Jack Grealish will stand out, if he plays. I don't want him to play for that reason."
Unlike with England, the pair couldn't decide who would be Scotland's main man.
Strachan plumped for Grant Hanley to keep Harry Kane quiet, along with Kieran Tierney and Liam Cooper, but Hoddle picked Scott McTominay.
The former Scotland boss said: "As long as Hanley and Tierney are there, that is good pace.
"Hanley has played against Kane a few times, so that will help.
"It would be good to play the three players who have played against Kane.
"Hanley, Cooper and Tierney have all faced Kane in the Premier League and they know the ins and outs of their games.”
Hoddle replied: “[Scotland's] major asset is their team play, they haven’t got a Kenny Dalglish or a Charlie Nicholas.
"McTominay, if he has a good game, could be vital for Scotland. The game’s going to be won in that area.
"Rice and McTominay have got to dominate the ball, so that’s going to be a key battle in midfield.
"Scotland haven’t got anyone you really fear.”
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