England Report v France (h)
The tributes ahead of the game were played well, little can ever be done to make what happened in Paris right but these were well observed as expected.
Another young and inexperienced England side was selected, I think I heard it said the youngest in 50-years or something with Spurs teammates Alli and Dier forming part of the midfield as they made fill debuts.
Thanks to the help of Alli, who was particularly impressive, England won this friendly 2-0.
When it came to the game itself it wasn't known if it would be played at testimonial pace, which all-in-all I'd say it wasn't, or not but the French started well enough but it was a poor clearance from Lloris that dropped to his Spurs teammate that gave England an early sighter his cross into Rooney was cleared away though.
It wasn't a bad first half hour or so from England, with us getting forward well - often on the break.
Rooney, albeit straight at him, did have a freekick on target that Lloris dealt with and the captain had the best chance of all on half hour as a break saw him turn Koscielny inside out but his drive went away from the top corner.
Alli marked that first start with a cracking goal before half time!
This was a goal that started with him after a full bloodied challenge in midfield to get England on the move with him then picking up a Rooney pass with only one thing in his mind, to let fly! This beat Lloris all ends up with him having no chance as it flew into the top corner, 1-0 England.
Kane tried his luck shortly after but his effort, as you would expect, was saved by Lloris at his near post with another break just before half time seeing Sterling go it alone with his effort deflected wide when others were probably best placed.
A change, with him getting the chance he deserved, at half time was made by Hodgson with Butland on for Hart with the Stoke goalie given a 45-minute run when many might have expected him to have started one of the games against Spain or France - at least he had his chance as I say!
It was at the other end of the field where England made an impact early in the 2nd half though as once again Alli won the ball in midfield, getting it out wide to Sterling who put the ball across to Rooney who volleyed past Lloris who couldn't keep it out.
Having been one of the French half time changes, with the hour approaching, Pogba had the best effort to that point for the visitors as he curled an effort just over that landed on the roof of the net as the French pressure grew a bit.
On the break though England looked a threat quite often, with some nice play seen.
Butland hadn't really had anything to do but when called upon, as Pogba's influence on the game grew, played a good one-two with Martial backheeling the Man United man into a goalscoring chance but unable to dig it out of his feet the Stoke goalie spread himself well and made a good save with that the last involvement of the night for Martial.
A much better England performance as we looked a real threat, especially on the counter-attack.
Given what happened in Paris on Friday, taking into account what sort of mindset many of the French players were in, it's difficult to know exactly how much we can read into this win but a wins a win and as much as footie, as I'd constantly said in the lead up to the friendly, pales in significance to things in 'the real world' it was a good show from England.
Positives could definitely be taken from this, Alli without a doubt one of them, which they weren't from the Spain defeat really were they!
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