Jordan Henderson to captain England against Malta

Daniel Levy has labelled the spending of a number of Premier League clubs this summer as 'unsustainable'

England are on course to secure a ticket to Russian Federation ahead of Friday's qualifier against Malta in Ta'Qali, but recent friendly games have laid bare the extent to which they trail behind the global elite.

"People tell me Malta are improving but Scotland ran out 5-1 winners so I'm not sure how that case stands - it should be a comfortable evening for Gareth Southgate's men". I don't think we're that far away. Two of the most in-form England players are missing, however.

Every game for Scotland has been a must-win and here we are, four points off second, and it really is a must-win.

The Three Lions now lead Group F, bagging a total of 14 points from six matches.

Slovakia and Slovenia also face off tonight, the two teams placed second and third in the group respectively, so England will make some ground on at least one of them should they get their own job done.

In addition to the loss to France, a 1-0 defeat by Germany and 2-2 draw with Spain underlined that they remain some distance from the finished article.

Southgate has handed the armband around amid Wayne Rooney's fading influence before the striker's global retirement.

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England's 3,700 travelling fans resorted to gallows humour during a dire first half, chanting "we're f***** s***" and then booing their players at the end of a period devoid of inspiration, drive and intent.

Jordan Henderson will skipper England against Malta as Gareth Southgate continues to share captaincy duties.

The odd nervy moment when racing off his line in the opening period did little to win over the doubters, but those in front of him were in for the most flak after a promising England start petered out.

"The teams that have gone past have found it hard, we've found it hard in recent years, but we have to somehow change that around and see what happens next summer".

The deadlock was broken in the 52nd minute as Malta failed to clear a cross and Alli found Kane who emphatically finished past Hogg to score a vital goal for his side. Hence it is predicted that in today's match, the team England will win against Malta.

Germany head to Prague for Friday's World Cup qualifier against the Czech Republic.

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