England were made to come from behind to earn an excellent 5-1 victory over Montenegro in Euro 2020 qualifying on Monday evening.
The hosts took a shock lead mid-way through the first-half as Marko Vešović curled a wonderful effort home. Michael Keane then struck back for the Three Lions with an excellent header from a free-kick. Callum Hudson-Odoi, who was a nuisance all night-long, played a key role in England’s second as his shot was deflected into the net by Chelsea teammate Ross Barkley. The latter got his second with a well-taken finish before Harry Kane was teed up by Raheem Sterling for another.
The Manchester City forward rounded off the scoring with a wonderful finish as he was released by Jordan Henderson.
Dominant start but behind
It was a dominant start by England but they weren’t quite able to find an early opening. The closest they came was when Raheem Sterling did brilliantly to weave into the Montenegro boss but Dele Alli was just unable to stretch quite enough to reach his cross.
Despite the hosts being relatively content in sitting back, they actually managed to take the lead. Vesovic did well to dribble right into the England defence and got a bit of fortune as the ball bounced back off of Michael Keane. Space then opened up and he curled a wonderful shot into the far corner of the net and beyond Jordan Pickford.
Keane replies with thumping header
Three Lions complete comeback
Gareth Southgate’s though did indeed have time to turn the game around. Hudson-Odoi, making his full England debut, showed brilliant awareness to charge at the Montenegro defence and looked for goal. Barkley stuck out a leg and diverted the youngster’s shot into the net to put the Three Lions ahead.
The Chelsea man then almost stole the show with excellent control, driving run and shot but his low effort was stopped well by Danijel Petković.
England turn on the style
The lead was extended even further, and once again it was Ross Barkley on the scoresheet. The midfielder picked up a loose ball on the edge of the Montenegro box and thundered it into the net.
The only player who was oddly quiet throughout the evening was Kane but that was not the case for too much longer. Sterling sprinted at the defence and cut the ball back to the Tottenham man and it was an easy task as he stroked the ball into the bottom corner.
Sterling did get on the scoring eventually as he latched onto a stunning through-ball from substitute Jordan Henderson and finished confidently under Petkovic to round off yet another wonderful night for the Three Lions.
England’s resolve really could have been tested as they fell behind. However, the Three Lions displayed plenty of confidence and maturity to come back into the match and blow away their hosts. Once again, Southgate’s troops were eye-catching offensively and were full deserving of their victory.
Montenegro: Petkovic (5); Tomasevic (4), Simic (5) (Jovovic (6), 74′), Savic (5); Stojkovic (5); Vesovic (7) (Boljevic (5), 70′), Hosseini (6), Ivanic (5), Marusic (6); Mugosa (5), Beciraj (7) (Jankovic (5), 61′).
England: Pickford (6); Rose (6), Maguire (7), Keane (7), Walker (7); Alli (6) (Henderson (7), 64′), Rice (7), Barkley (9) (Ward-Prowse (N/A), 82′); Sterling (8), Kane (7) (Wilson (N/A), 83′), Hudson-Odoi (8).
Goals: Vesovic (17′), Keane (30′), Barkley (38′, 59′), Kane (71′), Sterling (80′)
Referee: Aleksei Kulbalov
Yellow Cards: Barkley (52′), Boljevic (90+2′), Henderson (90+2′), Rose (90+3′)
Red Cards: N/A
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