So, what happened? Having watched previous England v. San Marino clashes I was well expecting a 10 man behind the ball wall and England to be given a very difficult lock that they would labour to pick. While that was a fair description of San Marino’s defensive efforts, it would be wrong to say that they failed to produce any forward play.
There was solitary shot that flashed to the left hand side of Joe Hart’s goal, even if the Manchester City man was largely unemployed throughout the evening and, though it never came to much, there was a tendency to allow a couple of men to surge from the defence to join breakaways (which would fizzle out before half time more often than not).
There was a bone of contention in that I thought it was the blue boot of Gary Cahill that had inadvertently tripped the Sammarinese goalkeeper rather than his yellow-booted team-mate as Phil Jagielka scored but that goal rather signalled the end of the game as a contest.
Raheem Sterling looked customarily bright despite his reported fatigue and two of England’s highest scorers both added to their tally. Congratulations to both.
- 49 – Bobby Charlton
- 48 = Gary Lineker
- 48 = Own Goals
- 44 – Jimmy Greaves
- 43 – Wayne Rooney
Entertainment value? 4.5/10.