ENGLAND bosses have been given a huge headache after being drawn against Hungary in the Nations League.
Gareth Southgate must take his team back to Budapest, where players were subjected to racist abuse during a World Cup qualifier in September.
England chiefs will have another home fixture with Hungary to deal with after trouble last time the teams met at WembleyCredit: Rex
And the Three Lions will have to travel to Budapest where Raheem Sterling was racially abused
The Three Lions were yesterday handed a tough set of fixtures in their League A group, with Italy and Germany also featuring.
Matches will be played in June and September of next year, with the finals, which England reached two years ago, in 2023.
Hungary were hit with a fine of nearly £160,000 and a two-match ban, one of which was suspended, after the problems in September.
Fifa’s disciplinary committee acted after Jude Bellingham and Raheem Sterling were targeted with monkey chants, while objects were thrown at players during the Three Lions’ 4-0 win.
Hungary were subsequently forced to play their World Cup qualifier at home to Albania behind closed doors.
Equally, the FA faces security issues for the return home game.
Hungary fans, aided by Polish supporters, caused problems in the away end at the start of the World Cup qualifier at Wembley in October, which finished 1-1.
The Metropolitan Police said there was ‘minor disorder’ from fans after officers entered the stand to make an arrest for a racially-aggravated public order offence.
The dates of the fixtures will be announced Friday.
The hope is that the home game against Hungary will be England’s first scheduled one in June, as that will be played behind closed doors as punishment for disorder caused by supporters at the Euro 2020 final against Italy.
England boss Gareth Southgate said: “They are great fixtures to look forward to.
“The Nations League and its format is geared towards these types of games.
“Whoever we drew out of the first two pots were going to be high-level opposition and that is what we wanted leading into a World Cup year.
“We have had a tough fixture schedule through the last 12 months but the high quality of games is what helps the team to improve and they are the matches we have learned the most from.”
Potentially, the game in Budapest could also be played behind closed doors.
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Hungary were handed another three-match stadium ban, with one suspended, after racist chanting from fans during Euro 2020.
Asked about the clash, Southgate said: “We don’t know when that fixture will be played and if it’s one that might be behind closed doors, but we’ve got to understand that it could be a difficult fixture.
“They came to Wembley and played extremely well, made life difficult for us, so it is another challenge but one we’ve got to respond to in the right way.”