England ‘dodging pre-Euro 2020 friendly against France over fears of psychological damage just months before tournament’ – The Sun

ENGLAND are reportedly one of a number of nations “ducking” out of a friendly clash with France in the build-up to Euro 2020.

The World Cup holders are desperately attempting to try and secure games against top quality opposition ahead of next summer’s spectacular.

However, L’Equipe claim a host of European teams are refusing to play Les Bleus “because they are concerned of the psychological effects” a defeat could have on their players so close to the tournament.

Belgium were due to take on France in a friendly March.

But now they have pulled out with boss Roberto Martinez no longer wanting his squad to take part.

And the report in France says that agents in charge of arranging friendly games believe it is due to his fears over losing.

A defeat to the French could potentially see Les Blues climb above the Belgians into top spot in the Fifa world rankings.

An unnamed agent involved in attempting to secure a game for France reportedly said: “Other nations are in the same mindset.

“They say that losing to France would not be the best way to begin their preparation for the Euros.

“England, for example, would prefer to face Italy during this period.”

The FA have already confirmed that Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions will play four friendlies prior to the Euros.

They take on Denmark at Wembley on 31 March, four days after their first warm-up match on home turf.

Another game on these shores will be played in June, away from Wembley, with a final friendly to be played elsewhere in Europe.

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