England’s World Cup satisfaction has been punctured by Spain on its homecoming.
Back in action after a surprising run to fourth place at the World Cup, England was sent to its first competitive home loss in 11 years on Saturday.
Saul Niguez and Rodrigo scored as Spain came from behind to win 2-1 at Wembley Stadium at the start of its UEFA Nations League campaign.
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It was a bright start for Luis Enrique, who was hired after Spain’s last-16 exit at the World Cup. While Spain departed earlier than anticipated, England unexpectedly made it to the final weekend.
England reached the semifinals in Russia, but lost to Croatia and then fell to Belgium in the third-place game. It means for all the optimism surrounding Gareth Southgate’s side, England has lost three competitive matches in a row.
It led for only two minutes against Spain after Marcus Rashford’s strike which was set up by Manchester United teammate Luke Shaw in the 11th minute of the Group 4 game.
Shaw was taken off at the start of the second half after a serious-looking injury. Shaw and Spain defender Dani Carvajal were challenging for the ball. Shaw connected with a header but collided with Carvajal, fell backward and his head bounced off the ground.
Shaw was making his first England start since facing Switzerland in September 2015, a week before his double leg break while playing for United.
In another League A game — in Group 2 — Switzerland routed Iceland 6-0.
In League B, Bosnia-Herzegovina won 2-1 at Northern Ireland.
In League C games, Finland beat Hungary 1-0 and Greece won in Estonia by the same score.
In League D — the lowest tier — Belarus thrashed San Marino 5-0 and Luxembourg swept aside Moldova 4-0.