Tha Sports Junkies 101

Match Report: England 2-0 Lithuania

England Photo credit to Matt Churchill via Flickr


Judging by England’s last two games under new stewardship, Gareth Southgate have got the Three Lions squads clogs well-oiled for the first time in a long while.

London, England – Despite the scoreline, the teams performance was refreshingly positive during their 1-0 loss to Germany.

They carried this on into today’s World Cup Qualifier against Lithuania, despite a slumberous opening 10 minutes. With warmed muscles again, the free-flowing passes returned as they pinned the visitors in their own third for the majority of the half.

The breakthrough inevitably came on 22 minutes when Jermaine Defoe marked his England return. Defoe turned in a low Raheem Sterling cross, his first goal in four years for his country.

After this the Lithuanian defense stubborned for a little while. Getting one or two shots off at the other end as a result. However, the hosts consistently found space out wide getting crosses in regularly from Sterling, Ryan Bertrand and Kyle Walker on both flanks.

Second Half

England let their guard slip monetarily second before half time. However, when Lithuania’s midfielder Vykintas Slivka managed to get his head from a long ball and lob the advancing Joe Hart from what seemed an offside position.

Fortunately for his custodian, John Stones was there the clear the ball before it bounced into the goal to make sure England went into the break 1-0 up.

Southgate’s men came out with more potency at the beginning of the second half, with Sterling coming close within the first few minutes from another low cross, but this time goalkeeper Ernestas Setkus being equal to it.

Patient build up by England saw them double the lead on 66 minutes after a one touch ball by Adam Lallana set up the black-eyed substitute Jamie Vardy who sent the keeper the wrong way from his 6-yard one on one.

The home team’s defense ate up any Lithuanian threat. The English back line sustained very little pressure.

Half the chances started to present themselves with Marcus Rashford, Vardy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all unleashing efforts on goal.

10 minutes from time the substitutes combined as Rashford played through Vardy clear of the defense. But the goalscorer put too much on his chip as he saw his effort sail over the bar.

A header from Eric Dier, a long range shot from Oxlade-Chamberlain and a Rashford toe-poke all rained down on Lithuania’s goal in the final ten minutes but none prevailed as England won 2-0.

England remain sitting top of Group F.

A job well done.