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England vs Malta a few quick thoughts

  • Well Gareth Southgate’s reign as England manager gets off to a winning start but it couldn’t have been anything else after going up against Malta yesterday evening
  • A 2-0 win doesn’t quite the juices flowing after a spirited Maltese display
  • Andrew Hogg in goal for Malta was the man of the match after a string of impressive saves kept the score at a respectable level
  • After a slow start, England found their groove and were in front thanks to Daniel Sturridge’s excellent header
  • The Liverpool forward may have put The Three Lions ahead but that was about all he did in terms of his contribution
  • Dele Alli was tasked with playing the number 10 role and he very much rose to the challenge
  • It was goal just before the break that doubled England’s advantage and wrapped up the win for the home side
  • Alli could and should have had a hat-trick but if not for the acrobatics of Hogg in the Maltese goal
  • Jesse Lingard made his debut but it looked as if he had already played for the senior side on 20 plus occassions
  • He looked a natural on the big stage, compare that to the performance of Theo Walcott and you would have every right to think that is Walcott making his bow at this level
  • Walcott never really asked any questions of the Maltese defence and his place in the next game must now be under threat
  • Another player whose place could be under threat is Wayne Rooney. Booed by his own fans are we now seeing the end of his time as not only captain but also in the first eleven
  • With him being slotted into a deeper midfield position yesterday it seemed as if he was once again being shoehorned into the side
  • With Eric Dier set to return on Tuesday night against Slovenia, it begs the question who will be the one to step aside
  • Will Southgate make the first real decision since his reign in charge and drop the seemingly undroppable Rooney
  • That remains to be seen I guess but now the focus does shift to that game against Slovenia
  • Southgate will be delighted with a win but the once again the lack of killer instinct for England will be a worry
  • Hopefully they find their ruthlessness on Tuesday
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