Kalvin Phillips earned his second cap for England on Wednesday night as the Leeds United midfielder completed the whole 90 minutes of a 3-0 win against Wales.
Although it was a big win for the Three Lions, it was another one of your run-of-the-mill, dull international friendlies that fans struggle to get excited by.
Phillips, 24, has been nothing short of amazing during the last couple of seasons with Marcelo Bielsa in charge but England fans have struggled to warm to the midfielder.
But why is it that England supporters have been so negative about Phillips when Leeds fans have been full of nothing but praise?
It’s simple: England fans are miserable.
It is really hard to get excited about international friendlies and the UEFA Nations League, which is just a tournament of glorified friendlies that, at the moment, no one seems to be particularly bothered about.
Sure, we saw some good performances by Gareth Southgate’s side in the last Nations League as they beat Spain and Croatia to get to the semi-finals before losing to the Netherlands.
But, so far this year, the Nations League has been a horrific, eye-gouging watch for England, even though they are unbeaten.
Phillips has made his England debut at a horrible time where fans are fed up of watching live football on their televisions.
It’s fine when you’re watching the match at home when it’s Aston Villa winning 7-2 against Liverpool, Tottenham thrashing Manchester United 6-1 or Leeds beating Fulham 4-3. And if it’s your club you’re watching, you’re always more invested in them than you are England.
England fans are so detached from international football away from friendlies and that has led to a lot of them hitting out at players just because they’re not doing anything exciting.
Phillips doesn’t play the same role for England as he does Leeds, which is why he’s not someone who neutral supporters are drooling over.
Southgate cannot change his entire plan just to accommodate Phillips – that’s fair enough and we wouldn’t expect him to – but England fans need to be reminded not to watch these matches with the same expectations as they would their club.
It’s just not the same and nor will it ever be the same either.
In other Leeds United news, a loan-to-buy deal is on the cards for a new central midfielder at Leeds.