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  Page Last Updated 22 October 2015



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Wednesday, 11 October 2000
World Cup 2002 UEFA Group Nine qualification match

Finland 0 England 0 [0-0]

Match Summary
Finland Squad
England Squad
Team Records

Olympiastadion, Toolo, Helsinki
Attendance: 36,210;
Kick-off: 7.00pm local, 5.00pm BST
Live on U>Directsports TV (UK) -
Commentator: xx

Finland - Antti Niemi (6)
Results 2000-2005

Finland kicked-off. 92 minutes (45 & 47).


Match Summary

Officials from France




Referee (black) - Alain Sars
39 (30 April 1961), Dombasle-sur-Meurthe, FIFA-listed 1993.

Assistant Referees - Pierre Ufrasis, 44 (21 April 1956) and Alain Augu, 44.

Fourth Official
Laurent Duhamel, 32 (10 October 1968), Rouen, FIFA-listed 1999.

The first ever occasion that England have only been accessible to watch via pay-per-view television.
4 Goal Attempts 9
1 Attempts on Target 5
0 Hit Bar/Post 0
7 Corner Kicks Won 5
1 Offside Calls Against 7
22 Fouls Conceded 11
45% Possession 55%

Finland Team



FIFA (11 October 2000) 56th
EFO ranking

ELO rating 59th
Colours: Made by Adidas - Blue v-neck collared jerseys with white collars/cuffs/Adidas sleeve trim and side panel extending up to shoulders, white shorts with blue side panel and white Adidas trim, blue socks with white Adidas trim.
Capt: Jari Litmanen Manager: Antti Muurinen, 47 (4 March 1954), appointed 20 August 1999, effective January 2000, 
12th match,
W 5 - D 3 - L 4 - F 13 - A 13.
Finland Lineup
1 Niemi, Antti M. 28 31 May 1972 G Heart of Midlothian FC, Scotland 41 GA
Niemi cautioned in the sixth minute for Unsporting Behaviour, after bringing down Sheringham as he rounded him outside the penalty box.
2 Helin, Petri, off 46th min. 30 13 December 1969 RB FC Jokerit 18 3
3 Saarinen, Janne J., off 67th min. 23 28 February 1977 LB

Helsingin JK

3 0
4 Hyypia, Sami T. 26 7 October 1973 CD

Liverpool FC,  England

36 1
5 Tihinen, Hannu 24 1 July 1976 CD Viking FK, Norway 15 1
6 Nurmela, Mika 28 26 December 1971 RM SC Heerenveen, Netherlands 19 0
7 Wiss, Jarkko 28 17 April 1972 LM Stockport County FC, England 32 2
8 Valakari, Simo J. 27 28 April 1973 CM

Derby County FC, England

19 0
9 Forssell, Mikael K., off 77th min. 19 15 March 1981
born in West Germany

Crystal Palace FC, England on loan from Chelsea FC, England

7 0
10 Litmanen, Jari O. 29 20 February 1971 AM

FC Barcelona, Spain

67 17
11 Johansson, Jonatan L. 25 16 August 1975 F

Charlton Athletic FC, England

29 9
Finland Substitutes
13 Reini, Juha, on 46th min. for Helin 25 19 March 1975 RB

Koninklijke Racing Club Genk, Belgium

14 0
15 Salli, Janne, on 67th min. for Saarinen 22 14 December 1977 LB FC Haka 8 1
16 Kuqi, Shefki, on 77th min. for Forssell 23 10 November 1976
born in Yugoslavia

FC Jokerit

13 2

unused substitutes:

12-Jussi Jaaskelainen, 14-Mika Kottila, 17-Aki Riihilahti, 18-Joonas Kolkka.
4-3-1-2 Niemi -
Hyypia, Tihinen, Saarinen (Salli) -
Nurmela, Valakari, Wiss -
Litmanen -
(Kuqi), Johansen.


Age - Appearances/Goals - -


England Team



FIFA (11 October 2000) 15th
EFO ranking

ELO rating 13th to 14th
Colours: The 1999 Umbro home uniform - White shadow horizontal striped crew neck jersey with navy collar/cuffs, white Umbro sleeves trim, navy shorts with navy Umbro side trim, white socks with navy pintrim.
Capt: Martin Keown, only captaincy Caretaker Head Coach: Howard Wilkinson, 56 (13 November 1943), re-appointed as caretaker coach 7 October 2000.
2nd and final match, W 0 - D 1 - L 1 - F 0 - A 2.
England Lineup
1 Seaman, David A. 37 19 September 1963 G Arsenal FC 62 35 GA
2 Neville, Phillip J. 23 21 January 1977 RB Manchester United FC 30 0
3 Barry, Gareth, off 69th min. 19 23 February 1981 LB Aston Villa FC 5 0
4 Wise, Dennis F. 33 16 December 1966 CM Chelsea FC 21 1
5 Southgate, Gareth 30 3 September 1970 CD Aston Villa FC 40 1
6 Keown, Martin R. 34 24 July 1966 CD Arsenal FC 36 2
7 Parlour, Raymond 27 7 March 1973 RM Arsenal FC 9 0
8 Scholes, Paul 25 16 November 1974 LM

Manchester United FC

30 10
9 Cole, Andrew A. 28 15 October 1971 F Manchester United FC 10 0
10 Sheringham, Edward P., off 69th min. 34 2 April 1966 F Manchester United FC 39 9
11 Heskey, Emile W.I. 22 11 January 1978 F

Liverpool FC

10 1
England Substitutes
12 McManaman, Steven, on 69th min. for Sheringham 28 11 February 1972 M Real Madrid CF, Spain 31 3
17 Brown, Wesley M., on 69th min. for Barry 20 13 October 1979 LB Manchester United FC 2 0

unused substitutes:

13-Nigel Martyn, 14-Nicky Barmby, 15-Rio Ferdinand, 16-Joe Cole, 18-Michael Owen.
4-3-3 Seaman -
P.Neville, Keown, Southgate, Barry (Brown) -
Parlour, Wise, Scholes -
(McManaman), Cole, Heskey.


Age 28.4 Appearances/Goals - -


    Match Report by Mike Payne


Source Notes

England were robbed of a morale-boosting World Cup victory against Finland in a controversial finale in Helsinki.  And Albania's shock 2-0 win over Greece means England now languish at the bottom of Group Nine - already facing a major struggle to reach the finals in Japan and Korea in 2002.

Arsenal's Ray Parlour looked to have snatched the winner four minutes from time when he danced past the Finnish defence and shot home via the crossbar.  Replays showed Parlour's shot clearly crossed the line, but French referee Alain Sars and his assistants completed a night of ill-fortune for England by failing to give the goal.  It was hardly a throwback to Geoff Hurst, 1966 and all that - the setting and the quality of a low-key encounter saw to that.  But it would have been the perfect tonic after the trauma of Kevin Keegan's resignation.  Instead, caretaker coach Howard Wilkinson was left with only the consolation of the first point of the 2002 qualifying campaign to comfort him.  England did not deliver a vintage performance in a disappointing game, but they will be massively frustrated to be denied victory in such dramatic fashion.  Referee Sars was also in controversial action early on, failing to send off Finland goalkeeper Antti Niemi after he fouled Teddy Sheringham when he was clean through.  But in the end, England will be thankful for small mercies after one of the most tortuous weeks in their recent history.  England's revamped line-up - showing six changes from the side defeated by Germany - were denied the perfect start in controversial fashion.

The game was only five minutes old when Sheringham took Petri Helin's wayward pass around goalkeeper Niemi and was upended with the goal unguarded.

The offence came outside the area, but it was still a major surprise when French referee Alain Sars reprieved Niemi with a yellow card.  England's players were angered, and the frustration only increased when the resulting free kick was comfortably cleared.  Niemi was fortunate again after 20 minutes when, in a moment of blind panic, he clearly picked the ball up outside the penalty area, but remarkably it was not spotted by referee Sars or his assistants.  England were dominant in the first half, but it was supremacy without a cutting edge.  They came closest when Emile Heskey touched Dennis Wise's free kick towards goal, but his Liverpool team-mate Sami Hyypia cleared off the line under pressure from Martin Keown.  Heskey was posing problems for Finland with his pace and power in the early stages, creating an opening for Sheringham which was met with a disappointingly weak finish from the Manchester United veteran.

Finland's threat was restricted to the occasional break, but they sounded a warning for England after 36 minutes when Mika Nurmela's cross was only inches away from finding Charlton's in-form striker Jonatan Johansson.

England's only other moment of danger came four minutes later when Mikael Forssell shot narrowly over after finding space inside the penalty area.  Finland opened the second half in more positive mood, with gifted Barcelona midfield man Jari Litmanen finally exerting his influence on proceedings.  He was closing in on a cross from Nurmela after 53 minutes, only to see Parlour clear with a magnificent defensive header at the far post.

It was the first time England had been under any concerted pressure, but goalkeeper Seaman - the culprit when Dietmar Hamann scored Germany's winner - was being well protected.

It was a much more even contest after the interval, and Finland's increased pressure prompted caretaker coach Wilkinson into his first changes after 69 minutes.  Wilkinson's changes were surprising, with Sheringham, one of England's most influential performers, taken off along with Aston Villa's Gareth Barry.  Real Madrid misfit Steve McManaman was given his chance, along with Manchester United youngster Wes Brown, who slotted into an unfamiliar right back position.  Finland had the best chance of the game after 73 minutes, and this time England were grateful to the heavily-criticised Seaman for staying on level terms.  Litmanen's delicate flick released Forssel, but the Crystal Palace striker hesitated, allowing Seaman to plunge bravely at his feet to save as England survived their first major scare.  England were suddenly under pressure, and it was an uncharacteristic piece of poor control by Litmanen that let them off the hook with only Seaman to beat.  Then came the late Parlour drama - with memories revived of the 1966 World Cup campaign and Geoff Hurst's goal.  This time luck was not on England's side, and they left Helsinki cursing.

Original newspaper reports
Official Teamsheet
Rothman's Yearbooks