Football: Man for man

Adam Szreter analyses England's individual performances
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The Independent Online

Spent first half as a virtual spectator, watching shots from Hagi flying miles wide of the target. Hagi finally got one on target, which he dealt with easily, but left stranded by Ilie's chip on to bar and had no chance with Moldovan's goal. Well positioned for Ilie's shot soon after that and distribution generally effective. 7


First touch in World Cup was a good ball down the line to set up a first- minute opening for England. Blotted his copybook with England's only aimless long ball of the first half, but rallied well with a couple of smartly timed interceptions and linked well with Beckham and Anderton on the right. 6


Expert positional sense as usual making up for lack of pace. Usually in the right place at the right time, although one uncharacteristic charge across to right flank was badly mistimed. Caught napping by Moldovan for Romanian goal. 7


Showed good anticipation and a greater sense of adventure than against Tunisia, roaming forward to good effect on a couple of occasions but should have been covering across for Le Saux when Ilie escaped down the right and hit the bar. 6


Booed by England fans when teams were announced but responded with greatly improved performance. A dangerous early cross and a snap-shot that went just over and flashed another across face of goal in second half. He showed persistence, no little skill and even fought for the ball at times. Tried to make things happen. 7


Lucky to escape first-half caution for cynical foul on Hagi and gave the ball way once or twice early on but gradually became attuned to the occasion. Assumed greater responsibility after Ince's departure but shared some of the blame with Le Saux for allowing Hagi to set up Moldovan's goal. 6


Never recovered from third-minute challenge by Hagi. Made one typical interception but never looked himself. Replaced by Beckham. 5


After initial over-confidence, had an excellent first half, getting the better of his Chelsea team-mate Dan Petrescu. Never afraid to go forward and often England's best outlet. Fell for Hagi trickery along with Batty and shouldered share of blame when Petrescu scored Romania's second. 7


Tried one or two ambitious balls early on but settled down and began to link well with Shearer again. Always seemed to choose the right option in first half but began to struggle in the second as Galca's man-marking proved hard to deal with. Bounced back well though. 7


Looked quite sharp but unable to get into the game as much as he would want. Struggled to hold the ball up on occasions, playing further forward than usual but not linking up with Shearer as effectively. Replaced by Owen for last 17 minutes. 5


Battling display with precious little to go on. Led the line as best he could given the poor supply and scant support he received from Sheringham. 7



Quickly into his stride after looking suitably bewildered to find himself not only on the pitch but playing in his favourite position. Looked lively and showed some great touches, including free-kick just over. 7


Found his feet quickly after replacing Sheringham. Displayed his lightning reactions and speed of thought and movement to snap up an equaliser. Later hit the post with another inspired snap-shot. 8