England v Spain: Man for man marking
Parker's tireless industry gives solid base for dogged victory
Sunday 13 November 2011
Joe Hart 5/10
Perhaps expecting a busier Saturday than he has become accustomed to with Manchester City, the goalkeeper was in fact rarely tested. In the first half, David Silva wriggled through and Hart had to be alert to save at the near post. And in the final minutes he got down well to save Cesc Fabregas's shot on the turn.
Glen Johnson 5/10
With David Villa drifting out wide on Spain's left, the Liverpool full-back often looked vulnerable in the early stages, the space between him and the centre-backs being exploited as early as the 11th minute when a quick pass slipped in Villa for a shot that was smothered. Was not often able to get forward in support of the attack, and the one memorable time he did so, Jordi Alba shepherded him, and the ball, out for a goal-kick.
Phil Jagielka 6/10
The Everton centre-back faced a daunting task as the quicksilver Spanish attack created mischief and bewitchment in front of England's back four. But the line held, the final stiletto passes rarely found their mark, and the defence grew in confidence during the second 45.
Joleon Lescott 6/10
He must have faced David Silva many times in Manchester City training, one wonders if he gets closer to the elusive creative force. But the centre-back passed the ball neatly and grew in confidence after the break, looking increasingly composed as numerous Spanish substitutions disrupted the opposition's rhythm.
Ashley Cole 6/10
Those pacey runs at the opposition's right side were few and far between, but defensively England's left flank looked more secure than its right. Once in the first-half Alvaro Arbeloa found space, and he also beat Cole too easily early in the second period.
Phil Jones 5/10
Manchester United's former Blackburn defender, of whom so much is expected, got in a couple of strong tackles while one powerful run through the middle in the first half saw Darren Bent set free by a crisp pass. But the striker had gone too early and was caught offside. The experiment of playing him in midfield was not a success.
Scott Parker 7/10
England's most reliable defensive midfielder got the tackles in during a typically hard-working performance in which he covered the Wembley turf as tirelessly as ever. One sliding intervention on the edge of England's six-yard box in the final 10 minutes kept Hart's goal intact, and with it England's win.
Theo Walcott 5/10
Unable to use that searing pace against Jordi Alba and spent much of the first half as a peripheral figure. His best lightning run after 40 minutes sticks in the mind, but he was effectively shackled.
Frank Lampard 6/10
The England captain for the day certainly had to earn his 90th cap, firefighting in Fabio Capello's hard-pressed midfield in the first half. Almost inevitably, he was on hand to nod the ball into the empty net, one of his easiest England goals.
James Milner 6/10
Robbed Alvaro Arbeloa early in the second half and ran up the left, pursued by three, until the Spanish left-back stopped his break with a foul. Milner curled in a teasing free-kick that found Darren Bent's head to set up the goal. In the first half he worked hard in tandem with Cole to limit the threat to Hart's goal. Booked for a tackle on Ramos.
Darren Bent 5/10
Bereft of service, the lone striker tried hard but was unable to forage for himself to any notable effect. Was none the less on hand to head Milner's cross on to the Spanish post, setting up England's winner.
Stewart Downing Came on at half-time for Walcott. Tightened up the right flank.
Gareth Barry Replaced Lampard after 56 minutes. Flattened David Silva to present Spain with a free-kick in a dangerous position.
Jack Rodwell Took Jones's role in the 56th minute; poor control betrayed him when through on goal.
Danny Welbeck In action from the 63rd minute for Bent and set up a chance for Rodwell. Looked lively.
Adam Johnson On for Milner after 76 minutes, one promising late break marred by a dreadful final pass.
Kyle Walker Replaced a tired Parker in the 85th minute.
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