England fell asleep in the dying minutes of the game to let Spain come back from 2-0 to pull off a fantastic comeback to stop England claiming a home victory.
The game started off slowly with both teams sharing equal amount of possession, until Adam Lallana put in a dangerous ball towards Jamie Vardy who tried to take it past the keeper and got brought down in the process. Lallana stood up to take the penalty and put it past Pepe Reina in the 9th minute of the game.
Adam Lallana’s night was cut short when he picked up a knock in the 27th minute from a poor challenge from Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara which forced an early change for England seeing Theo Walcott come on.
The first half died off after the penalty with neither team really causing any danger. Spain dominated the possession but couldn’t do anything with the ball in the final third. The home side looking very dangerous on the attack with the pace from the three front men but ended up with no threat towards goal in the first half. The half ended with more bookings than shots. Two shots were taken in the last 25 minutes both coming from the home side. 4 bookings were made in that period of time with both managers hoping to control their team’s discipline.
Gareth Southgate made a couple of changes at half time to try to insure the victory went to the home side. The changes saw in-form Burnley keeper Tom Heaton replace Joe Hart between the sticks and Phil Jagielka replacing centre half Gary Cahill at the break.
England look dangerous on the attack with a lot of pace going forward and was rewarded for their efforts in the 47th minute when the home side broke on the counter attack. The skipper Jordan Henderson put in a lovely floating ball towards the far post which found the Leicester striker Jamie Vardy to put away a bullet head to end his 14 game goal drought. Finished off with a brilliant celebration from the English man doing the ‘mannequin challenge’.
England should have made it three almost straight after the goal. Spain looking shaky at the back gave England the chance to have another deadly counter attack. Theo Walcott went through on goal and saw his shot parried out by Pepe Reina but Jordan Henderson couldn’t finish the follow-up putting his shot just wide of the post.
Spain picked up their football in the second half playing some mesmerizing football in the middle of the park and occasionally forcing a save from the English keeper. Spain looking dangerous when moving forward but England’s defence was very strong keeping the visitors out on numerous occasions.
In the 79th minute Southgate gave a chance to Aaron Cresswell, the 26-year-old West Ham fullback to gain his first ever England cap. He replaced Danny Rose who put in a solid performance for the home side.
Spain got a goal back in the 90th minute from La Liga’s player of the month Iago Aspas with a tremendous effort from the left hand side of the box hitting the ball sweetly off the post into the back of the net to give the visitors a sense of hope in the dying minutes.
Spain never gave up with a big 5 minutes from the visitors. In the dying embers of the game the ball went flying onto the chest of Isco who expertly put the ball through Tom Heaton’s legs from a tight angle to give the visitors a late equalizer with the last kick of the game. The game came to an end seconds later with a sign of disappointment from the England players who thought they’d be able to see out the game.
A frustrating end for England and especially Interim manager Gareth Southgate who is still unsure whether he will have a future at England. There was some positive signs from the game with a man of the match performance coming from Jamie Vardy who showed fantastic pace and precision when on the ball. With Gareth Southgate being unbeaten in his time as the England manager could we see a decision soon from the FA to see the man take on the job on a permanent basis?
Attendance at Wembley was 83,716.