Gareth Southgate has admitted England are facing “more of a challenge” because of their nightmare build-up to the Euros.
Southgate’s plans have been thrown into chaos by injuries, withdrawals and 11 players missing when the squad met up.
It means, incredibly, Southgate will have FIVE training sessions with the full squad before England’s first Group match with Croatia next Sunday.
Southgate had a perfect preparation for the World Cup in 2018 but full training only starts on Tuesday while Marcus Rashford’s fitness will have to be managed through the tournament while both Bukayo Saka and Harry Kane also missed training last weekend.
England boss Southgate said: “It’s likely to be more of a challenge in this tournament than any tournament previously, I think.
“Spain and Portugal still have friendlies to play as their group games are later. We do have less time but we have to use that time as well as we possibly can.
“Our whole season has been one where we have had to adapt and show resilience. Even on Saturday night there were potential issues that me and the staff had to work through quickly and then that changed and we were fine so its constant changing environment.
“Everyone in the world is dealing with that. We knew ours was more complicated than most but some of the teams are having to change base. So everyone has their issues. We are not unique in that. We have just got to make the best decisions and adapt and show that resilience.”
Southgate expects to be without Arsenal teenager Saka for another couple of days while Kane also sat out the win over Romania and any injury to England’s top scorer will set alarm bells ringing.
Tottenham striker Kane will be desperate to fit to play all seven games, be top scorer again but even Southgate admits that it may be difficult for every player to start every game should they go all the way.
Southgate added: “In terms of players playing all seven matches, we are going to need and will use the squad. There is no doubt about that. It’s always a challenge.”