ENGLAND 4 LITHUANIA 0
England maintained their one hundred percent record in the 2016 European Championship qualifiers as they comfortably dispatched Lithuania. The highlight of the day was Harry Kane scoring on his debut for England to continue his sophomoric breakout season.
Within three minutes of the game England sparked to life as Fabian Delph played Wayne Rooney in. However Rooney’s shot hit the post. That should have been the perfect start for England. However they did not have to wait long to take the lead. In the 6th minute, Danny Welbeck wriggled past two Lithuanian defenders and hit a shot, which was saved by Giedrius Arlauskis, but he parried it to Rooney who headed it into the net to give England a well-deserved lead. That was his 47th international goal. He only needs two more to equal Sir Bobby Charlton’s record.
Welbeck and Raheem Sterling’s pace was causing the Lithuanians all sorts of problems coupled with their movement and interchanging of positions.
Just after the half hour mark, Vytautas Andriuskevicius crossed the ball into the England box and Deivydas Matulevicius saw his shot smothered by the England defence. That was their first decent sight at the England goal.
Rooney hit a free kick in the 38th minute but Arlauskis comfortably gathered it. Two minutes later Welbeck blasted a shot over. Just before the break Welbeck was played in by Sterling but he spent too long dwelling on the ball when he should have taken a first time shot. That is one of Welbeck’s shortcomings. A minute later Welbeck atoned for his earlier miss as his goal bound header from a Jordan Henderson cross was deflected into the net to double England’s lead. England went in 2-0 up at the break.
Just after the break, Rooney crossed the ball from the right to the left and Fabian Delph met it with a first time volley but it was saved. England kept pressing and went looking for more goals. Next it was Welbeck who cut in from the right wing and saw his shot saved.
Just before the hour mark England made it three. Rooney crossed the ball from the right and Sterling swept the ball home, wrong footing the keeper at the same time.
Harry Kane replaced Wayne Rooney and within a minute of coming on Sterling cross the ball to the far post, where Kane met the ball with a header and scored on his debut. The boy can do no wrong at the moment. Roy Hodgson will hope that is the first of many goals for the England, for the Tottenham youngster.
Although this was a comfortable win for England, the Lithuanian defending was none existent while they offered very little upfront. The likes of Phil Jones and Gary Cahill were untroubled, while Michael Carrick kept things ticking over nicely in midfield as he usually does at his club.
Things look promising for England but don’t they always until they hit a brick wall at a major tournament?
Hodgson said: “We are delighted to have Harry Kane and we hope that is the first of many goals for him. We will build him up for the future and not knock him down.”