Lampard saves England

first_imgFrank Lampard saved England’s blushes with a first-half equaliser as Roy Hodgson’s men had to settle for a 1-1 draw against Ireland at Wembley. Cole, named captain after much confusion on Tuesday, collected a special gold 100th cap before kick-off from Hodgson and looked moved by the occasion. Before kick-off the Football Association repeated its call for fans not to chant politically-motivated songs, and most England supporters respected the plea during the national anthems, with only a few home fans singing “no surrender” during God Save The Queen. Wayne Rooney, making his first start in a month, looked keen to impress and he attempted a lob that went just wide after a long ball from David Forde in the third minute. England continued to have the majority of possession, but Forde remained untested. Then, with 13 minutes on the clock, the buoyant home crowd were stunned in to silence as Ireland took the lead. Walters fed the ball to right-back Seamus Coleman who whipped in a cross to the near post and Shane Long got in front of Glen Johnson and Phil Jagielka to glance the ball beyond a sprawling Joe Hart. The West Brom striker cupped his ears in front of the England fans while one member of the travelling support at the other end of the stadium tossed a green smoke bomb on to the pitch which caused a brief stoppage in play. England were shaken for a moment, but they were back level 10 minutes later. Sturridge bought half a yard with some nifty footwork and drove a low ball across the box which Lampard controlled with his thigh after a mix-up between Sean St Ledger and Glenn Whelan before flicking the ball past Forde with his right foot. Sturridge’s evening came to a close on the half hour when he hobbled off with what looked like a serious ankle injury following a tackle with Whelan. Jermain Defoe came on in his place. An injury was the last thing Hodgson wanted. With Danny Welbeck already carrying a knee problem, Sturridge’s injury leaves the England boss with 15 fully-fit outfield players to take to Brazil for Sunday’s friendly in the Maracana. Press Associationcenter_img Shane Long put the visitors ahead after 13 minutes, but Lampard prodded the ball past David Forde following a defensive mix-up 10 minutes later. To make matters worse for England, Daniel Sturridge hobbled off with an ankle injury in the first half, further depleting Roy Hodgson’s squad ahead of Sunday’s game in Brazil. last_img

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