England recorded an emphatic 6-0 victory over Bulgaria in one of the Euro 2020 qualifiers played on Monday night.
The Three Lions, despite several racial cases of abuse from the Bulgarian fans all through the game, where emphatic in their display as Ross Barkley and Raheem Sterling scored twice after Marcus Rashford had opened the scoring for the team.
Few days before the game was played, there were fears about racial discrimination and racism by the home fans during the game, and Three Lions players including Tammy Abraham and Raheem Sterling had insinuated that the team could walk-off the pitch if subjected to racial discrimination.
Nevertheless, the team agreed to support UEFA Three-step policy to fight against racism. Seven minutes into the game, Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford showed individual brilliance to give the team the lead.
13 minutes later, Chelsea’s Ross Barkley doubled the advantage. However, shortly after the second goal, the play was stopped after England’s Captain Harry Kane and Gareth Southgate made a complaint to the referee.
The complaint was addressed with the first step of UEFA protocol, with the referee stopping play and announcing over the Public Address System that play could be stopped if the act doesn’t stop.
Play was resumed shortly after the stop and Ross Barkley made it three while Raheem Sterling, just after the game was suspended for the second time in the 42nd minute, also scored late into the first-half stoppage time to make it 4-0 – sending the game beyond the Bulgarians who are rooted to the bottom of Group A.
In the second half of the game, the match received a better atmosphere as racist chants and discrimination reduced. Thereafter, Raheem Sterling scored his second on the 71st minute, while Harry Kane scored with less than five minutes from time.
The victory puts England one step further towards qualifying for Euro 2020 championships, but Kosovo’s 2-1 win over Montenegro meant that the Three Lions will have to wait to secure the qualification for the Championship.
Written by: Daniel Idowu Ademiju