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894 vs. Denmark

Wednesday, 17 November 2010
Football Association International Friendly Match

England 1 France 2 [0-1]
 

The National Stadium, Wembley, London
Attendance: 85,495;
Kick-off: 8.04pm GMT;
Live on ITV One (UK) - Commentator: Clive Tyldesley

France - Karim Benzema (eight-yard shot 16 15:28), Mathieu Valbuena (twelve-yard volley 55 54:47)
England - Peter Crouch (wide three-yard volley 86
85:10)
Match Summary
England Squad
France Squad
Results 2010-2015 England - Jordan Henderson (49 48:08)

England kicked-off. 95 minutes (45 & 50)

 

Match Summary

Officials from Denmark

England

Type

France

Referee (red) - Claus Bo Larsen
44, (28 October 1965), Odense, FIFA-listed 1996.

Assistant Referees - Niels Hoeg, 35 (26 July 1975) & Lars Hummelgaard

Fourth official - Andre Marriner, 39 (1 January 1971), Birmingham, England.

Guest of honours' included members of the Armed Forces.

10 Goal Attempts 12
6 Attempts on Target 5
1 Hit Bar/Post 1
3 Corner Kicks Won 5
0 Offside Calls Against 2
4 Fouls Conceded 13
41.9% Possession 58.1%

England Team

 

Rank:

FIFA (17th Nov'ber 2010) 6th
ELO rating 6th
Colours: The 2010 home uniform - White shirts, royal blue shorts, white socks with blue tops.
Capt: Rio Ferdinand, 7th captaincy Steven Gerrard (46-84), James Milner (85). Coach: Fabio Capello, 64, appointed 14 December 2007, effective 7 January 2008, 
33rd match, W 22 - D 5 - L 6 - F 74 - A 29.
England Lineup
1 Foster, Ben A. 27 3 April 1983 G Birmingham City FC 5 4 GA
2 Jagielka, Philip N. 28 17 August 1982 RB Everton FC 7 0
3 Gibbs, Kieran J.R., off 72nd min. 21 26 September 1989 LB Arsenal FC 2 0
4 Gerrard, Steven G., injured off 84th min. 30 30 May 1980 M Liverpool FC 89 19
5 Ferdinand, Rio G., off 46th min. 32 7 November 1978 CD Manchester United FC 80 2
6 Lescott, Joleon P. 28 16 August 1982 CD Manchester City FC 12 0
7 Walcott, Theo J., off 46th min. 21 16 March 1989 M Arsenal FC 15 3
8 Henderson, Jordan B. 20 17 June 1990 M Sunderland AFC 1 0
Henderson was cautioned in the 49th minute for unsporting behaviour after a slightly late tackle on Gourcuff.
9 Carroll, Andrew T., off 72nd min. 21 6 January 1989 CF Newcastle United FC 1 0
10 Barry, Gareth, off 46th min. 29 23 February 1981 M Manchester City FC 44 2
11 Milner, James P. 24 4 January 1986 M Manchester City FC 15 0
England Substitutes
18 Young, Ashley S., on 46th min. for Barry 25 9 July 1985 M Aston Villa FC 11 0
19 Johnson, Adam, on 46th min. for Walcott 23 14 July 1987 M Manchester City FC 6 2
13 Richards, Micah L., on 46th min. for Ferdinand 22 24 June 1988 D Manchester City FC 12 1
20 Bothroyd, Jay, on 72nd min (71:33) for Carroll 28 5 May 1982 F Cardiff City FC 1 0
14 Warnock, Stephen, on 72nd min for Gibbs 28 12 December 1981 D Aston Villa FC 2 0
21 Crouch, Peter J., on 84th min for Gerrard 29 30 January 1981 F Tottenham Hotspur FC 42 22

unused substitutes:

12-Rob Green, 15-Chris Smalling, 16-Gary Cahill, 17-Carlton Cole, 22-Scott Loach.
   
4-5(3-2)-1 Foster -
Jagielka, Ferdinand
(Richards), Lescott, Gibbs (Warnock) -
Henderson, Barry
(Young) -
Walcott
(Johnson), Gerrard (Crouch), Milner -
Carroll
(Bothroyd).

Averages (Starting XI):

Age 25.5 Appearances/Goals 24.6 2.5

 

France Team

 

Rank:

FIFA (17th Nov 2010) =21st
ELO rating 22nd
Colours: Made by Adidas - Blue shirts with red/white trim with white collar/Adidas trim, white shorts with blue/red Adidas trim, red socks with white Adidas trim.
Capt: Hugo Lloris Coach: Laurent Blanc, 54 (15 November 1956), appointed February 2010.
6th match, W 4 - D 0 - L 2 - F 9 - A 4.
France Lineup
1 Lloris, Hugo 23 26 December 1986 G Olympique Lyonnaisnais 19 13 GA
2 Sagna, Bacary, off 86th min. 27 14 February 1983 D Arsenal FC, England 26 0
12 Abidal, Eric S. 31 11 September 1979 D Barcelona FC, Spain 51 0
4 Rami, Adil 24 27 December 1985 D LOSC Lille Métropole 6 0
5 Mexes, Philippe, off 46th min. 28 30 March 1982 D AS Roma, Italy 19 0
17 M'Vila, Yann 20 26 June 1990 M Stade Rennais 5 0
20 Valbuena, Mathieu, off 68th min. 26 28 September 1984 F Olympique de Marseille 7 2
8 Gourcuff, Yoann M., off 85th min. 24 11 July 1986 M Olympique Lyonnais 25 3
15 Malouda, Florent J., off 77th min. 30 13 June 1980 F Chelsea FC, Arsenal 62 5
10 Benzema, Karim M., off 67th min. 22 19 December 1987 F CF Real Madrid, Spain 32 11
11 Nasri, Samir 23 26 June 1987 M Arsenal FC, England 19 2
France Substitutes
3 Sakho, Mamadou, on 46th min. for Mexes 20 13 February 1990 D Paris Saint-Germain FC 1 0
7 Remy, Loїc, on 67th min. for Benzama 23 2 January 1987 F Olympique de Marseille 6 1
18 Diarra, Alou, on 68th min. for Valbuena 29 15 July 1981 M FC Girondins de Bordeaux 30 0
14 Payet, F. Dimitri, on 77th min. for Malouda 23 29 March 1987 F AS Saint Etienne 3 0
9 Hoarau, Guillaume, on 85th min. for Gourcuff 26 5 March 1984 F Paris Saint-Germain FC 4 0
13 Reveillere, Anthony, on 86th min. for Sagna 31 10 November 1979 D Olympique Lyonnais 9 0

unused substitutes:

6-Yohan Cabaye, 16-Cédric Carrasso, 19-Younes Kaboul, 21-Kevin Gameiro, 22-Gaël Clichy, 23-Stéve Mandanda.
   
4-3-3 lloris -
Sagna
(Reveillere), Rami, Mexes (Sakho), Abidal -
Gourcuff
(Hoarau), M'Vila, Nasri -
Valbuena
(Diarra), Benzama (Remy), Malouda (Payet)

Averages (Starting XI):

Age 25.3 Appearances/Goals 24.6 1.9

 

    Match Report by Mike Payne

Fabio Capello was forced into many changes for this friendly international at Wembley, and quite rightly he tried out some of our best young players.  But if he was hoping that France would show the same poor form that they had shown for most of the year he was in for a big shock.  This has to go down as France's best performance of the year as their possession football gave the England youth side a severe lesson!  If it proved one thing it was that we still need the experience of the likes of John Terry, Frank Lampard, and Ashley Cole in the side, to help out the youngsters.

England began the match on the front foot and Steven Gerrard fired in a first minute free-kick that was saved by the keeper.  But as soon as France found their feet on what was a cold, wet November night, they dominated the game for long periods.  Some of their one touch play was exquisite and the England players were chasing shadows at times.  After six minutes they had three good attacks one after another.  With Malouda and Nasri looking particularly sharp the England defenders were stretched to the limit.  Ben Foster made a fumbling save from Malouda's shot and then the same player went close again on 11 minutes.  France were well on top and dominating the midfield.  Gourcuff saw a shot well saved by Foster as England just could not gain possession.  When they did they invariably gave it away again and back came France.  On 16 minutes the visitors deservedly took the lead.  A lovely one-two between Malouda and Benzema left the latter with a clear strike, which he hit low at Foster's near post.  The goalkeeper stuck out a foot but the ball went past him and he will be annoyed that the ball beat him at his near post.

For five minutes after the goal England barely had a touch of the ball as France displayed some excellent possession football.  Gerrard did intercept one pass and almost sent Theo Walcott away but France were also defending well and they quickly snuffed the Arsenal winger out.  At the other end Benzema and Nasri combined well to force a corner and only good defending by Rio Ferdinand and Joleon Lescott kept the French at bay.  Milner had a shot on 27 minutes but then France broke quickly and Benzema should have increased their lead.

It took England almost 30 minutes to create a really good chance.  A free-kick by Kieron Gibbs was knocked down by Andy Carroll only for Gerrard to sweep the ball over the bar instead of under it.  On a positive note Carroll had a very good debut match and he caused the French defenders problems both in the air and on the ground.  But the Newcastle player had a very limited service from his midfield and was feeding on scraps.

Malouda was pulling the strings for France and they had long spells of possession to frustrate the England players and the crowd.  Carroll had a shot easily saved as England tried to push forward.  Jordan Henderson was working hard, but found life difficult at this higher level.  Lescott had a good game at the back and made some vital interceptions at times.  If you could criticise France then their over-casualness at times ruined their approach play, like Arsenal they do over elaborate at times.  It must be a French thing!

Capello made three changes after the break with Ashley Young, Adam Johnson and Micah Richards coming on, whilst the anonymous Gareth Barry, Rio Ferdinand and Theo Walcott went off.  So it was an even more inexperienced England team.  Barry was very poor and Walcott had one of those infuriating ineffective games that he often has.  Ferdinand didn't do anything wrong but it was time to try something different.

France largely controlled the first ten minutes of the half and on 55 minutes they increased their lead.  Sagna had oceans of room to cross from the right and the England defenders failed to attack the ball allowing Valbuena to fire home a shot on the run.

England gamely battled on and when Johnson fired in a free-kick to the far post Gerrard arrived late to head onto the top of the crossbar.  That was unlucky and Gerrard had been England's most dangerous attacker.  Meanwhile France could afford the luxury of taking off both goalscorers as they continued to dominate.  Carroll did put in one good header but it was easily saved.  He was replaced by another debutant Jay Bothroyd on 72 minutes.  Three minutes later the Cardiff player was in the area when Johnson's fierce drive deflected wide just as he looked to touch it in.

This was a real lesson for England in how to play 'give and go' and the French continued with this pattern of play even after Malouda was substituted.  He had been their best player.  With ten minutes left England almost scored when the goalkeeper fumbled a cross by Johnson and was very lucky to see Gerrard's follow up shot go the wrong side of the far post.  At the other end Nasri then hit the outside of the post after skipping past the England defenders.

Gerrard limped off after 83 minutes to be replaced by Peter Crouch, and with virtually his first touch the Tottenham player pulled a goal back.  Young took a corner deep to the far post and Crouch volleyed home a good goal to give England some hope.  Say what you like about Crouchy, but nobody can fault his goals record for his country.  Even though England did exert a little bit of pressure towards the end, Bothroyd and Milner having weak efforts, there was no real threat of an equaliser, and quite frankly it wouldn't have been deserved.  In the main England were outclassed on the night.  How typical of the French to raise their game to a new level when they play against us!

As for England, there were some positives, Carroll being one of them, but this match did emphasise the lack of depth in quality in the England ranks, hopefully the young players will learn from this though and go back to their clubs and up their game.

Source Notes

BBC Sport
TheFA.com
ITV.com/football
Goal.com
Soccerway.com
Mike Payne - football historian and contributor

____________________

CG