England vs Norway: international friendly match preview

A look ahead to this evening's international friendly at Wembley

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The Independent Football

England will likely play in front of a record low attendance for the new Wembley with just 40,000 expected through the turnstiles tonight.

The previous low was just over 48,000 for a friendly against Sweden in Ocotber 2011 but after a disastrous World Cup campaign and a thoroughly uninspiring squad, interest in the national team is at a low point.

The opposition are hardly likely to get the pulses racing either, with no star names in their squad the most recognisable player is Morten Gamst Pederson, the ex-Blackburn winger long removed from his best, and current Rovers winger Joshua King.

But this is an important game for Roy Hodgson. Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Ashley Cole et al are gone and the manager needs to find youngsters that can cut it at international level, while Wayne Rooney has to prove he is captain material.

England players go through their paces

Although this is just a friendly, England have a hugely important qualifier in Switzerland on Monday, on paper the toughest game of their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign.

Looking at the last three games this one may not be a cracker, either.

KICK-OFF: Tonight, 8pm


Norway 0 England 1 (Young), Friendly, May 2012

Norway 0 England 0, Friendly, October 1995

England 0 Norway 0, Friendly, May 1994


Just six players who played in the May 2012 game are in the current England squad.

Norway last beat England in a World Cup qualifier in June 1993 – one of the worst defeats of Graham Taylor’s shambolic reign.

Calum Chambers, Danny Rose, Jack Colback and Fabian Delph could all win their first England caps.

England are currently 20th in the Fifa rankings, the Three Lions’ lowest position since February 1996, when they were 27th.

Norway are currently ranked 53rd.


England to win: 1.5

Norway to win: 8.6

Draw: 4.5

TV: Live on ITV1 and ITVHD at 8pm.