Which Liverpool and Manchester United men shone for England in the win over Malta?
It was a controlling and dominant performance by England in Gareth Southgate’s first game as interim manager, but the Three Lions could only score twice against a dogged and determined Maltese outfit, who had goalkeeper Andrew Hogg to thank for keeping the scoreline respectable. Two first-half strikes from Daniel Sturridge and Dele Alli were enough to see off the visitors, and there was a debut for Manchester United wide-man Jesse Lingard, in a match where skipper Wayne Rooney featured in midfield once again.
But how did the players rate in this one sided affair? Who impressed and who struggled to get into gear at Wembley?
Hart- 6: Had barely anything to do all night and was reliable when called upon late-on to thwart Andre Agius.
Walker- 5: Untested defensively but going forward he was far to wasteful in the final-third with his crossing.
Cahill- 6: Again he had nothing to do in defence, but when his chance came in the first-half to score it went begging.
Stones- 7: Didn’t have a great deal to do defensively but a presence in both boxes and did his job well. Always wanting to be on the ball.
Bertrand- 5: His night only lasted for 18 minutes after pulling up with a hamstring problem.
Henderson- 8: Constantly wanting the ball and looking to create opportunities. Albeit against smaller opposition England could use this type of performance from the Liverpool man more regularly.
Alli- 7: Creative, a threat throughout and got his goal. Could have been on the scoresheet more than once and missed one guilt-edged chance near the end.
Rooney- 5.5: He sat deep playing passes as well as trying his luck a couple of times, drawing a fine first-half save from Andrew Hogg. Clearly entering the twilight of his England career.
Walcott- 6: Worked hard and ran the flanks well but lacked end product. Wasteful in front of goal.
Lingard- 7.5: His first-half header drew another fine save from goalkeeper Andrew Hogg and he laid a golden opportunity on a plate for Walcott which was wasted. None too shabby a debut for the Manchester United man.
Sturridge- 7: Opened the scoring with a fine effort, his first Wembley goal in two years. Could have had more but wasted a couple of decent chances.
Rose- 6.5: Played well after replacing Ryan Bertrand on 18 minutes. Now surely in contention to start in Ljubljana against Slovenia.
Rashford- 6: Came on for Walcott on 67 minutes and was greeted well by England fans. Put in a wonderful cross from which Dele Alli should have done better.
Vardy- 5: Came on for Sturridge with just over a quarter of an hour remaining. The Leicester man had somewhat of a quiet evening after coming on.
Zach Muscat- 5
Alex Muscat- 5
Rowen Muscat- 4
Michael Mifsud- 4.5
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