England's perfect start to their latest European Under-21 Championship campaign continued with an easy win over Iceland in Reykjavik last night, Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain getting a hat-trick.
The win maintained England's 100 per cent start to their latest qualifying campaign, further banishing memories of the summer's dismal finals in Denmark ahead of Monday's trip to Norway. The only negatives for manager Stuart Pearce were hamstring injuries to strikers Nathan Delfouneso and Martyn Waghorn, who both limped off and appear doubtful for the next game.
Oxlade-Chamberlain pounced on a loose ball, raced goalward and coolly slotted home across Iceland goalkeeper Arnar Darri Petursson for England's first goal in the 12th minute. Three minutes later, Petursson gifted the Arsenal winger his second when he spilt Delfouneso's cross straight at the feet of Oxlade-Chamberlain, who passed the ball into the empty net.
England killed the contest within five minutes of the second half when the 18-year-old easily beat two men before unleashing a cross-cum-shot from the tightest of angles which Petursson helped into the net.
England Under-21 (4-4-2): Butland; Flanagan, Briggs, Dawson, Kelly; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Barkley, 82), Rodwell, Henderson, Lansbury; Sordell, Delfouneso (Waghorn, 24; McEachran, 63). Substitutes not used Amos (gk), Smith, Baker, Lowe.