Sunday, April 22, 2018

Friendly international’s review

David Nugent in Editorial, General Soccer News 7 Feb 2013

Wayne Rooney scored England opening goal in the Three Lions 2-1 victory over Brazil

Wayne Rooney scored England’s opening goal in the Three Lions 2-1 victory over Brazil at Wembley

Last night’s international friendly games produced a host of goals. England defeated Brazil 2-1 at Wembley in one of the biggest games of the night.

The Three Lions took the lead on 27 minutes, Wayne Rooney slotting home, after Julio Cesar had produced a superb save from Theo Walcott.

Brazil made changes at half-time and substitute Fred had an almost instant impact. Gary Cahill over ran the ball and was rob by Lucas Moura, the ball broke to Fred whose curling effort beat Joe Hart.

The Fluminense striker nearly scored with an identical effort just a minute later, but this time his effort struck the upright. The game was settled by another substitute, this time of the England variety.

Veteran Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard picked the ball up on the edge of the penalty box and side-footed the ball past Cesar via the inside of the post. Brazil looked a bit lacklustre in the second half and England hung on for their first win against the Samba Boys in 23 years.

Elsewhere, Holland and Italy drew 1-1 in the Amsterdam Arena. The Dutch produced far more of an attacking threat in the first half and took the lead on 33 minutes. Striker Jermain Lens blasted home a volley after the Azzurri defence failed to clear Daryl Janmaat’s cross.

The visitors only registered two shots on goal and scored with their second one in stoppage-time. Substitute Marco Verratti firing home with a left-footed effort to give the Italians an unlikely draw.

Germany defeated France 2-1 at the Stade de France. The home side took the lead on the stroke of half-time, midfielder Mathieu Valbuena heading home from close range. The visitors came out strongly in the second half and equalised on 51 minutes.

Bayern attacker Thomas Muller placed an effort into the far corner after being found by Ilkay Gundogan. The winner arrived on 73 minutes, Sami Khedira poking the ball past Hugo Lloris, after Mesut Ozil had found his Real Madrid teammate with a through ball.

World champions Spain also claimed a win, as Los Rojas won 3-1 against Uruguay in Qatar. Spain took the lead on 16 minutes, as Cesc Fabregas’ speculative 30 yard effort somehow made it through the hands Uruguay keeper Fernando Muslera.

The Copa America holders were back on level terms on 32 minutes, Christian Rodriguez outmuscled Carles Puyol, before firing past Victor Valdes in the Spanish goal. Spain regained the lead on 51 minutes, Pedro firing into the top corner from a pass from substitute Gerard Pique.

The European champions sealed victory in the 74th minute. Cesc Fabregas fired in a super cross which was met by Pedro who scored his brace from close-range.

Argentina’s star-studded squad won 3-2 in Sweden. The visitors took the lead on three minutes, Mikael Lustig deflecting a Gonzalo Higuain effort past his own keeper. West Brom defender Jonas Olsson headed the home side back on level terms in the 17th minute.

Parity lasted just two minutes though as Argentina regained the lead through Sergio Aguero, who looked to be offside. The visitors extended their lead on 23 minutes, Gonzalo Higuain scoring from close-range, after Andreas Isaksson had parried a Lionel Messi effort.

Sweden had more of the ball in the second half, as the visitors settled for their two goal cushion and the home side scored a consolation goal deep into stoppage-time. Midfielder Rasmus Elm struck a superb free-kick which gave Sergio Romero no chance.

Scotland claimed a 1-0 victory over Estonia in Gordon Strachan’s first game in charge of his country. The only goal of the game arrived on 39 minutes, Charlie Mulgrew firing home from 12 yards from a Charlie Adam free-kick.

Wales also claimed victory, beating Austria 2-1 in Cardiff. The Dragons took the lead on 21 minutes, Gareth Bale firing home after good work from Joe Allen. Wales doubled their lead on 52 minutes, Sam Vokes heading home from a Gareth Bale centre.

The visitors got a goal back on 75 minutes. David Alaba and Marko Arnuatovic combined well, before Arnautovic crossed for Marko Janko to head home.

The Republic of Ireland claimed a very creditable 2-0 victory over Poland at the Dublin Arena. Defender Ciaran Clark gave the home side the lead on 33 minutes, after Poland failed to clear James McClean’s corner.

The home confirmed victory on 76 minutes, Wes Hoolahan controlling the ball on his chest before volleying past Wojciech Szczesny in the Poland goal.

Whose victory was the most impressive from last night’s friendly international’s?


David Nugent

David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.



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