CHRIS SUTTON: England must play with flair not fear against Colombia

CHRIS SUTTON: England must play with flair not fear and not be afraid of Colombia if they are to fight their way through to a World Cup semi-final

  • England must not be afraid to fight for a win against Colombia on Saturday 
  •  They have enough in their own locker to avoid becoming another big name exit
  •  Click here to watch Mail Sport’s brand new show ‘It’s All Kicking Off’ in full

Colombia played the Republic of Ireland in a World Cup warm-up last month, only for this ‘friendly’ to be abandoned after 20 minutes.

The reason? The Football Association of Ireland said it became ‘overly physical’, and the Ireland manager Vera Pauw said her players ‘feared for their bodies’.

England can expect a fight on Saturday, but if they play the game their way, they can beat Colombia fair and square.

We want to see England play with flair, not fear. Do not be afraid of Colombia. 

Trust that you can take the game to them. That didn’t happen against Nigeria. It felt as if Sarina Wiegman’s side sacrificed their own attacking intent through fear of their opponents’ counter-attack.

The Colombian’s physical style has seen them reach a World Cup quarter-final against England

Sarina Wigeman’s side need to play with flair not fear if they are to progress into the next round


Mail Sport are launching a new 16-page 16-page sports pull-out in the Daily Mail this week MATCH DAY, in partnership with Sky Bet – and you can read it all on MailOnline.

It’s your definitive guide to all the weekend’s action and this week includes interviews with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Geoff Shreeves and Simon Jordan.

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It was only once Lauren James was sent off that England started to play. They were braver on the ball with 10 than they were with 11 because they had to be.

I’ve been there myself in a team that has gone a man down. You have to play, otherwise you risk regretting inviting pressure on yourself.

England got through that game and it is good news for Wiegman that her side have been finding ways to win without hitting their stride, that 6-1 win over China aside.

Yet I’m sure Wiegman will be desperate to avoid another nervy encounter like that one against Nigeria. 

Colombia may have an 18-year-old sensation in Linda Caicedo, but England have enough in their own locker to avoid becoming yet another vanquished opponent to underdogs at this World Cup.


It’s All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football, launching with a preview show today and every week this season.

It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube , Apple Music and Spotify

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