Despite having arguably the best league in the world in the Premier League, England have consistently fallen short of expectations in the World Cup and Euros.
However, that has all changed with the succession of Gareth Southgate from Under-21's manager to the senior team. A semi-finals appearance at the 2018 World Cup has coincided with some of the best young players in the world coming through England's academies.
The future is very bright for England, but the expectations of the FA are also very high. Here's our complete guide to seeing the Three Lions lift silverware for the first time in over 50 years in Football Manager 2020!
AS YOU'D EXPECT: England's goals are exactly what you'd assume when you take over
The FA's expectations reveal no surprises in FM20. They expect you to qualify for Euro 2020, whether by winning the qualification group or via the play-offs.
With the quality of players at your disposal, you should be comfortably winning the group, just like Southgate's England have.
It's worth noting that Euro 2020 being delayed until 2021 doesn't come into play in FM, there's no COVID-19 here.
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You begin FM20 top of the group with the Czech Republic with three wins from three games. There are five games still to go for you but with the likes of Bulgaria and Montenegro in the group, topping the standings come November is almost a formality.
The FA will set your target for Euro 2020 closer to the start of the tournament. They'll most likely demand you reach at least the quarter-finals, but they could want as much as a final appearance.
The most likely request though is that you get another semi-final appearance.
Tactical style & formation
England have a number of different tactical approaches at their disposal.
Generally, Control Possession is the optimum of the recommended styles. When playing against a much weaker opponent though, you may wish to opt for Tiki-Taka. Fluid Counter-Attack is a good option when playing against the top teams in the world.
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4-1-4-1 DM wide is the recommended formation but 4-2-3-1 plays to your side's strengths the most. You could also experiment with a three at the back formation but four at the back is the best to go with.
Your starting 11 should be Jordan Pickford in goal, with a back four of Ben Chilwell, Harry Maguire, John Stones and Trent Alexander-Arnold. Your central midfield pairing is Jordan Henderson and Ross Barkley.
The attacking midfield trio supplying service to the lone striker are best being Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling and Dele Alli. National captain Harry Kane will lead the line.
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The other players that are best to call up are Dean Henderson, Nick Pope, Kyle Walker, Joe Gomez, Fikayo Tomori, Danny Rose, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Rubens Loftus-Cheek, Jack Grealish, James Maddison, Marcus Rashford and Tammy Abraham.
James Milner and Jamie Vardy are both still good enough for the national team but are retired from international duty. If you can convince them to come back though, they'd provide vital experience for Euro 2020.
The attention of most football fans is directed towards the youngsters in the England setup but there are some great players already in and around their peak. Two in particular would walk into any side in Europe, being top scorers and assisters in their side.
Here's the top five currently declared for England in terms of their current ability (CA).
|Harry Kane||AM (C), ST||25||177/185||20 Penalty Taking, 19 Finishing, 19 Determination|
|Raheem Sterling||M/AM (RL)||24||174/180||20 Off the Ball, 19 Agility, 18 Anticipation|
|Trent Alexander-Arnold||D/WB (R), DM, M (C)||20||159/178||18 Passing, 17 Technique, 17 Crossing|
|Jordan Henderson||DM, M (C)||29||158/159||18 Natural Fitness, 18 Stamina, 18 Teamwork|
|John Stones||D (C)||25||156/170||18 Natural Fitness, 17 Composure, 17 Tackling|
The talent is spread around the pitch, aside from the goalkeeping position, with this being the clear weak spot of the Three Lions.
Kane and Sterling are the two world-class players in the national setup, both having CA's of over 170 and PA's of 180 or over.
There will be more players that join Kane and Sterling in the world-class bracket in the coming years though!
England have some incredible young players that are already in the first team. With an average age of 24, there are some brilliant players that are starting regularly for some of Europe's best clubs.
Here's the best three under-20 players in the national team setup according to the PA:
Trent Alexander-Arnold – CA 4 star (159), PA 5 star (178)
Trent Alexander-Arnold is quickly becoming one of the best full-backs on the planet. The Liverpool full-back has grabbed his opportunity with his hometown club with both hands and when fit is a certainty on Klopp’s team sheet.
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Trent is also able to play in defensive midfield and central midfield as well as right wing-back. His stand-out attributes are 18 passing, 17 crossing and 17 technique, all of which will get better in the coming seasons.
Jadon Sancho - CA 3.5 star (155), PA 5 star (178)
Jason Sancho is nothing short of incredible. The winger made his England debut as an 18-year-old and has been tearing up the Bundesliga for the past few years at Borussia Dortmund.
His attributes are brilliant for wide play and they will only get better, as he has over 15 years left at the top. That PA value of 178 is the highest in the Dortmund team and will see him be almost as good as Neymar (the highest-rated winger in FM20) when he’s fully matured.
Sancho is adept on both the left and right wings and should be starting for England, despite the competition from Rashford.
Phil Foden – CA 3 star (144), PA 5 star (175)
Phil Foden just misses out on your national selection when everybody is fully fit but is an excellent option when dealing with injuries and suspensions.
Foden will start improving rapidly when he begins to get more minutes at Manchester City. Foden could overtake the likes of Barkley, Grealish and Loftus-Cheek by the time Euro 2020 rolls around so he's well worth considering.
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The young Englishman already has 17 technique, 17 agility and 16 passing, it won't be long before he earns his first England cap in-game.
It's coming home
England came within two wins of winning the 2018 World Cup and have had two years to improve ahead of Euro 2020. Sancho, Alexander-Arnold, Abraham, Foden, and Grealish have all burst onto the scene since then.
Even more experienced players such as Kane, Maguire, Henderson, and Sterling have improved. There's no dead wood anywhere near this side.
Winning an international tournament is far from easy, especially with world champions France also having huge strength in depth and an equally impressive young side at their disposal.
Winning Euro 2020 won't be easy, but time is your friend, as even more youngsters like Dean Henderson, Fikayo Tomori and Reiss Nelson will feature more.
The young players now will be experienced for World Cup 2022, that could well be the one where we see the Three Lions finally lift that famous old trophy for the second time.
Full England Player Ratings
|Jordan Pickford||25||GK||SK||Support||4 star||146/165|
|Trent Alexander-Arnold||20||D/WB (R), DM, M (C)||CWB||Support||4 star||159/178|
|John Stones||25||D (C)||BPD||Defend||3.5 star||156/170|
|Harry Maguire||26||D (C)||BPD||Defend||3 star||150/156|
|Ben Chilwell||22||D/WB (L)||WB||Defend||3 star||146/165|
|Ross Barkley||25||M/AM (C)||AM||Support||3 star||147/159|
|Jordan Henderson||29||DM, M (C)||DLP||Support||3.5 star||158/159|
|Raheem Sterling||24||M/AM (RL)||W||Attack||4.5 star||174/180|
|Dele Alli||23||M (C), AM (LC), ST||AP||Support||3.5 star||156/165|
|Jadon Sancho||19||M/AM (RL)||IW||Support||3.5 star||155/178|
|Harry Kane||25||AM (C), ST||DLF||Support||4.5 star||177/185|
|Substitutes & Reserves|
|Dean Henderson||22||GK||G||Defend||3.5 star||135/159|
|Nick Pope||27||GK||SK||Defend||3.5 star||140/155|
|Kyle Walker||29||D/WB (R)||WB||Defend||3 star||151/157|
|Joe Gomez||22||D (RLC)||BPD||Defend||3 star||154/166|
|Fikayo Tomori||21||D (RC), WB (R)||BPD||Stopper||3 star||150/162|
|Danny Rose||28||D/WB/M (L)||WB||Defend||3 star||143/152|
|Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain||25||M (RC), AM (RLC)||MEZ||Support||3.5 star||154/158|
|Rubens Loftus-Cheek||23||M/AM (C)||DLP||Support||3 star||150/162|
|Jack Grealish||23||M/AM (RLC)||IW||Support||3 star||146/165|
|James Maddison||22||M (LC), AM (RLC)||AM||Support||3 star||151/163|
|Marcus Rashford||21||AM (L), ST||IW||Support||3 star||153/175|
|Tammy Abraham||21||ST||PF||Attack||3 star||150/165|