By Ollie Irish
The positives: Joe Hart kept a clean sheet, Ashley Young and Adam Johnson showed good intentions on the wings, Joleon Lescott and Rio Ferdinand looked solid… er, that’s about it. Kevin Davies won his first England cap, which on a personal level is great for him. Then he got booked for a loose elbow – classic Kevin.
The negatives: How long have you got? Let’s start with Glen Johnson’s comically bad defending, the flat atmosphere inside Wembley, Capello’s body language (meh), plus very poor displays by Gareth Barry, Peter Crouch and Wayne Rooney. And Jack Wilshere stayed on the bench! For England’s talented kids, tomorrow never comes – or when it does, it’s too late and their confidence is dented beyond repair.
Fortunately for England, their Euro 2012 qualifying group is impossibly easy, and even if (when) they play with such a lack of spark and wit again, they will still find it difficult not to qualify for Poland & Ukraine. Hopefully by then we’ll have a starting XI to be proud of, featuring the likes of Hart, Wilshere, Johnson (Adam, not Glen), Jack Rodwell, Tom Huddlestone, Andy Carroll, Tom Cleverley and Kieran Gibbs. We can’t keep going back to the Golden Generation. Change is long overdue.
I suppose we should also congratulate Montenegro for getting what they came for, and without their star player. They were cynical as hell, but they blunted England well.
The best photos from Wembley (click to big-up) below. Can you spot Ashley Young’s amazing dive?