England v Scotland: Watching Three Lions is 'purgatory' says Terry Butcher

England v Scotland: Harry Kane wary of losing to rivals
World Cup Qualifying Group F: England v Scotland
Venue: Wembley Stadium Date: Friday, 11 November Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio 5 live, BBC Radio Scotland & BBC Sport app; live text commentary on BBC Sport website & app

Watching England games is "purgatory" for supporters, says former Three Lions captain Terry Butcher.

England, who host Scotland at Wembley on Friday, drew 0-0 in their World Cup qualifier in Slovenia last month.

The result followed laboured wins over Malta and Slovakia as England look to bounce back from their embarrassing Euro 2016 exit against Iceland.

"We're reaching new lows all the time," said Butcher. "Just when you think it should have bottomed out, it doesn't."

England are top of their qualifying group after two wins and a draw, with fourth-placed Scotland three points behind their old rivals.

But Butcher, who won 77 caps between 1980 and 1990, is not impressed and says there is "no better time" for Scotland to play them.

"With England, you've got to win but you've also got to play well," he said.

"Drawing 0-0 in Slovenia is not acceptable and they scraped a 1-0 win against Slovakia. It's purgatory watching England, it really is. It is groundhog day."

Terry Butcher
Butcher's blood-soaked bandage is one of English football's most iconic images

Butcher, who famously played with a head wound as England drew in Sweden to clinch their place at the 1990 World Cup, says the current England players fail to show the same passion and commitment as previous generations.

"The jersey's like a straitjacket for the players," said the former Ipswich, Rangers and Sunderland centre-half, now 57.

"They have got to take the responsibility. They have got to really want it. They are not vocal. They're not demonstrative.

"They play like they've got their headphones on. You think 'what music are they listening to?' They're listening to the wrong track. They're not on the same beat."

On Tuesday, Butcher spoke to the England players at St George's Park after presenting Gary Cahill with a memento to mark his 50th cap.

Butcher described the meeting as "a real honour" and also backed interim boss Gareth Southgate to be given the manager's job full-time.

Under-21 boss Southgate will take charge for his third game on Friday, after replacing Sam Allardyce on an initial four-match basis.

England then play Spain in a friendly on Tuesday, also at Wembley.

Butcher thinks Southgate has a future as England boss and says there is a "good buzz" around the squad at the moment.

"He fits the bill very well," Butcher told BBC Sport.

"He's been there as a player, which is not necessarily that important, but he has been involved with managing teams at international level, getting them ready for qualifiers and tournament games.

"He has dealt with a lot of the younger players in the England squad, too."

Beating Scotland will ensure England stay on course to reach the 2018 World Cup finals in Russia, but Butcher believes the current squad is still "gripped by fear in tournament football".

Under Roy Hodgson, they were eliminated at the group stage of the 2014 World Cup before losing in the last 16 to Iceland at Euro 2016.

"It is a transitional period for them," said Butcher. "They are still bearing the scars of the Iceland game and the scars of the last World Cup.

"Hopefully, Gareth will get the job and can settle things down. Beating Scotland could be a stepping stone to go forward and back into a position of strength."

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