Gareth Southgate has called on his team to harness the pain of recent disappointment as they look to kick off their qualifying campaign with a positive result.
Italy famously beat England on penalties when the two countries met in the final of Euro 2020 back in July 2021, and also beat the Three Lions in a Nations League clash six months ago.
Since then, England also crashed out of the World Cup at the quarter-finals stage.
“Every disappointment is motivation, an opportunity to learn and to grow and, of course, the Euro final is additional motivation to us,” Southgate said ahead of kick-off.
“I am not going to deny that. Is it harder to refresh for a new cycle? No. The way we played in Qatar and then the disappointment of losing in the quarter-final, that generates motivation in itself.”
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