sport news England's Nations League games threw up plenty to ponder... Sportsmail's ...

England took four points from their two Nations League fixtures during this international break, edging past Iceland 1-0 before a goalless draw with Denmark.

The dismissal of Phil Foden and Mason Greenwood from the squad created plenty of discussion, while Gareth Southgate was criticised for England's style of play.

Here, Sportsmail's experts Chris Sutton, Martin Keown and Sami Mokbel give their verdicts on the Three Lions. 

There's much for Gareth Southgate to contemplate after England's Nations League games

There's much for Gareth Southgate to contemplate after England's Nations League games

Four at the back or five?  

CHRIS SUTTON: The 3-4-3 experiment against Denmark, with Kieran Trippier as left wing back and Eric Dier as a left-sided centre back, didn't do much for me. England have an excellent attack but it was disconnected. It's early days and I'm sure Gareth Southgate will want to look at this set-up again. It worked well at the 2018 World Cup, after all. But four is better balanced. 

SAMI MOKBEL: When everyone's available, five at the back has the potential to be very effective. The system formed the basis of England's run to the semi-final in 2018 and can be equally impactful ahead of the Euros. It didn't work in Copenhagen but Southgate should at least give it another go when his preferred personnel are available. 

MARTIN KEOWN: We've seen how the back three has been used in the Premier League successfully by Sheffield United and Wolves. By Arsenal, too, who won the FA Cup. But I've always preferred a back four. England have a good centre-back partnership in Joe Gomez and Harry Maguire. That has the makings of a strong base in a 4-3-3 system.

In Joe Gomez and Harry Maguire, England have a good central-defensive pairing that works

In Joe Gomez and Harry Maguire, England have a good central-defensive pairing that works

One goal in 180 minutes. Where's the creativity?  

MOKBEL: Well, there was none in central midfield. Southgate's decision to deploy two holding midfielders in Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice against Denmark stifled the team's creative juices. 

The front three will always be a threat but getting the ball to them in the right areas is the key to unlocking the door. Two defensive midfielders isn't the answer. 

SUTTON: Yeah I agree. It's the midfield. Against Iceland, who didn't show any attacking intent until they fell behind late on, England were crying out for someone who could break through the lines. 

Foden and James Ward-Prowse weren't having the desired effect. That's why I wanted to see Jack Grealish come on in that game and why I would have liked to see him get more than 14 minutes against Denmark. I'm not saying Grealish is the answer, but shouldn't he be getting more of an opportunity?

KEOWN:  The forwards weren't being fed in Denmark but these matches were during pre-season. We cannot ask too much of these players.

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