Jordan Henderson branded England “sloppy” after they laboured to a 2-0 World Cup qualifying win over Malta in Gareth Southgate’s first game at the helm.
Goals from Daniel Sturridge and Dele Alli in the first half saw the hosts take a comfortable lead into the break at Wembley, with Malta goalkeeper Andrew Hogg in fine form to limit the damage.
After half-time, however, England became rather more lethargic and relaxed, which disappointed Liverpool midfielder Henderson.
“Yes, we had chances for it to be more,” he told ITV. “That was one disappointment, not getting any more goals.
“We got a bit sloppy as the game went on and that’s something we really need to work on.
“But it was good to get the three points and we scored two good goals, so we have to be happy with that.”
The match was Southgate’s maiden outing as interim manager after replacing Sam Allardyce and Alli was quick to praise the 46-year-old.
“He’s a fantastic manager,” Alli added. “I’ve worked with him before for the Under-21s, so he knows what I’m about. I think it was a solid performance after a strong start.
“We dominated as we knew we would and this puts us in a good place to keep working on.”
England face Slovenia on Tuesday looking to make it three wins from three in Group F.
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