Tammy takes his chance and Grealish off the mark – England talking points

England continued their near-perfect push to qualify for the 2022 World Cup as they eased to victory in Andorra

A 5-0 win means Gareth Southgate’s side maintain their four-point lead at the top of Group I with three qualifiers remaining.

Here, the PA news agency looks at some of the major talking points from the comfortable victory in the heart of the Pyrenees.

No Kane, Tammy’s gain

With captain Harry Kane rested, Southgate opted to hand Tammy Abraham a first cap in nearly a year following his fine start to the season at Roma. While Leeds forward Patrick Bamford was unable to grasp the opportunity to impress in the home win over Andorra, Abraham grabbed his second international goal. The battle to be understudy to Kane is heating up and Abraham will be hoping this keeps him at the front of the queue.

Building from the back

While the goalscorers are always going to be highlighted in a 5-0 win, this was a momentous night for the England defence. The Three Lions set a national record with their 12th clean sheet of 2021, their most in a calendar year. This shut-out saw them surpass the record set by Gordon Banks and co in the World Cup-winning year of 1966 and it could be extended further with three games remaining between now and 2022.

Referee first

History was made as Kateryna Monzul became the first woman to referee an England game. The 40-year-old Ukrainian has prior experience of officiating men’s football but this was the first time the Three Lions have had a match overseen by a female. Monzul’s night was not without the odd moment of controversy but she managed to keep a lid on things when they could have got away from her at times.

Andorra get their Phil

Phil Foden may not have got on the scoresheet but his performance was the most eye-catching of the evening. The Manchester City man was playing in a deeper role than usual and was picking passes for fun. Roy Keane, in the ITV Sport studio, likened Foden to a quarterback, the highlight of his night arguably the fine ball over the top of the Andorra defence which saw Bukayo Saka put England 2-0 up.

Jack the lad

Southgate had recently called on Jack Grealish to add goals to his game with England and the £100million man finally opened his account here. Having already won a penalty after coming off the bench, Grealish collected a fine throw from goalkeeper Sam Johnstone before showing composure and slotting home. He will be hoping to return to the starting line-up for the Hungary game at Wembley on Tuesday night having now grabbed his first goal.

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