Match report as a youthful England side secure a 3-0 win over Wales thanks to a debut goal from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and strikes from Conor Coady and Danny Ings
Comment and Analysis
Thursday 8 October 2020 22:10, UK
Dominic-Calvert Lewin, Conor Coady and Danny Ings scored their first England goals as Gareth Southgate’s side secured a 3-0 win over Wales in Thursday night’s friendly at Wembley.
The in-form Calvert-Lewin, making his England debut after scoring nine goals in seven games for Everton this season, opened the scoring after 26 minutes when he headed home a Jack Grealish cross.
Wolves centre-back Coady doubled England’s lead early in the second half, scoring his first goal in 112 appearances for club and country when he poked Kieran Trippier’s free kick beyond Wayne Hennessey.
Ings, another starter in an experimental England line-up, then completed the scoring with a close-range overhead kick after substitute Tyrone Mings had headed a corner back across goal.
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Ings’ goal capped a satisfying evening for Southgate, whose preparations for the game were again disrupted when Jadon Sancho, Ben Chilwell and Tammy Abraham became the latest England players to breach coronavirus guidelines over the weekend.
How England’s new boys dispatched Wales
It was perhaps unsurprising, given that disruption, that Southgate’s men made a disjointed start, with Wales seeing most of the ball in the opening stages despite being without Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey and David Brooks.
England’s starting line-up only had 54 caps between them, but while some of his team-mates took time to settle into the game, mis-hitting passes and surrendering possession cheaply, Calvert-Lewin found his feet quickly.
The 23-year-old first threatened in the 13th minute, dribbling around Hennessey after latching onto an Ings pass on the right-hand side of the Wales box, then cutting the ball back across goal.
Wales were able to clear their lines on that occasion, however, and soon they were threatening at the other end, a poor defensive header from Bukayo Saka, another England debutant, falling to Kieffer Moore, who volleyed wastefully wide.
Wales were made to rue that missed opportunity a few minutes later, when Trippier, England’s captain on the night, found Grealish on the right flank. The Aston Villa man darted away from Ethan Ampadu and picked out Calvert-Lewin with a precise delivery.
Wales tried to muster an immediate response, but Chris Mepham’s header from Jonny Williams’ corner was held by Nick Pope, and the Burnley goalkeeper sprinted off his line soon afterwards to bravely deny Moore, who was running through on goal
Moore was proving a handful for England’s three-man defence up until then, but he was forced off with an injury after that coming together with Pope and Wales rarely threatened after that.
Coady, making only his second appearance for England, got his goal just eight minutes after the break, dispatching Trippier’s outswinging delivery with a deft finish at the far post.
England continued to push forward, with Ings punishing more slack Wales marking to send an overhead kick beyond the despairing Hennessey from eight yards out.
It was the first time three players had scored their first England goals in the same game since 1963 and they would have made it four had Saka’s deflected strike not been brilliantly kept out by Hennessey soon after Ings’ goal.
By then, though, the damage was done. Southgate’s options were depleted for this game. In addition to Sancho, Chilwell and Abraham being unavailable, Harry Kane was rested and Raheem Sterling had pulled out with an injury. But England showed they have more than enough depth to cope.
Both sides now turn their focus to the UEFA Nations League. England face Belgium in Group A2 live on Sky Sports Football HD from 4.30pm on Sunday, with kick-off at 5pm, while Wales are up against the Republic of Ireland in Group B4, with coverage starting on Sky Sports Football HD at 1.30pm ahead of the 2pm kick-off.
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