Let’s be honest from the get-go: England may be home to one of the most entertaining and continentally dominant domestic leagues around the world, but the national team’s performance on the international level has been, well, awful.
For all the dominant players, prominent teams and sort of patriarchal ownership that England claims over the sport, England has only ever won a single tournament. Sure, it was a World Cup, but England’s been living in the wake of their High School glory since the late 1960s. Since that victory, one underlined by favorable scheduling and refereeing for the English no less, the country has functioned primarily as overhyped also-rans at the international level. They’ll dominate headlines, make the quarterfinals and be labeled “contenders,” but will they ever genuinely threaten the competition?