England’s World Cup preparations got off to a winning start on Saturday, with the Three Lions securing a 2-1 win over Nigeria at Wembley.
Gareth Southgate started with Ashley Young and Kieran Trippier as wing-backs in a 3-5-2 formation against a Nigeria 11 featuring Chelsea’s Victor Moses and Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi.
England dominated the first-half, and took the lead after just seven minutes, with Gary Cahill powering home a header from a corner.
Captain Harry Kane doubled the hosts’ advantage before the break, netting from outside the box after some poor goalkeeping from Francis Uzoho.
Nigeria were much improved after the break, and got one back on 47 minutes, with Iwobi firing home after Odion Ighalo’s effort came back off the post.
Soon after, darling of the tabloids, Raheem Sterling, picked up a yellow card after a pretty feeble dive in the box.
England would hold on in comfortable style to register the win ahead of next week’s clash with Costa Rica.
Southgate will no doubt be pleased with the win, but concerned at a sloppy start to the second-half by his charges.
As for Nigeria, an improved second-half display will have given them a boost.
Although if extra points were awarded for the quality of the shirts on display, the Super Eagles would’ve won by a country mile.