England to stage friendlies across the country ahead of EURO 2016

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The English national team will go on a little tour before they head to France for the 2016 European Championships this summer.

England announced on Friday that three marquee friendlies have been set up for May and June to prepare Roy Hodgson’s side for EURO 2016.

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The Three Lions will face Turkey on May 22 at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium, then Australia at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light on May 27 before they head back to Wembley to face Portugal on June 2, their final warm up game before EURO 2016.

England have been drawn in Group B for the European Championships and will face Wales, Russia and Slovakia this summer.

Previous regulations stated they could only face one other team who had qualified for EURO 2016 in the month before the tournament, but those rules have changed and England will now face both Portugal and Turkey who have also qualified for the 24-team tournament taking place throughout June and July.

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The English national team have played every single friendly or qualifying game at the new Wembley Stadium since it opened back in 2007 and their last match on home soil which didn’t take place at the “home of football” came in February 2007 when they lost 1-0 to Spain in a friendly at Manchester United’s Old Trafford.

Fans of the Three Lions will certainly be happy to see the team go on a nationwide tour ahead of EURO 2016, as it’s been nearly a decade since they played a home game outside of London.

With Wembley set to be used more frequently in the coming years with NFL games and both Chelsea and Tottenham using it as a potential home while their new stadiums are being built, perhaps this is something we will see happen more often?

It’s always good to mix it up a little and for those England fans who remember spending six years watching their team across England while Wembley was being rebuilt from 2001-07, it was actually pretty fun to visit new places and see the roadshow roll into cities across the land.