Football Article

Spain, England win friendlies

Spain, England win friendlies Photo: TT

Spain, England and France all came out victorious in their international friendlies against Italy, Denmark and Netherlands respectively.

Spain v Italy

Spain and Italy were separated by the just the one goal scored by Pedro in the second half. Spain was dominant throughout the game with long periods of possession play.

Diego Costa was given his Spanish national debut by Coach Vicente Del Bosque. Coincidentally, Costa also made his Brazilian debut against Italy. Brazil was his country of birth, but he was given Spanish nationality last summer after staying in Spain for a while.

Italy was without star striker Mario Balotelli as he was ruled out due to injury. The Italian side could completely feel the absence of Balotelli. Alessio Cerci was close to breaking the deadlock, but his attempt ended up hitting the post.

Overall, the game saw both sides getting loads of chances but both keepers were solid in goal.

England v Denmark

England and Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge continued his prolific scoring form the only goal of the match which came late in the second half.

Roy Hodgson played a lot of fringe in a bid to give them a chance to impress in their national colours and possibly book a place on the flight to Brazil. Raheem Sterling was the only who seemed to have impressed the boss.

Overall the English side lacked vigour and played a highly mediocre game. They had not scored a single goal in their previous two home international games, but luckily they managed to net this time around.

Denmark did not have a lot to show either. Most of the game, they barely ventured across the halfway line and did not do much with the ball either.

Casper Sloth could have been sent off for a couple of nasty could, but probably with the game being a friendly he was issued just a yellow.

Kasper Schmeichel had a busy day in goal and was by far the best player of his side. Many would be a

Overall, Denmark did not threaten the English team much, and many would say that England deserved the scrappy win.

France v Netherlands

Two goals in a span of nine minutes spattered the two teams. Karim Benzema and Blaise Matuidi scored the goals at the Stade de France in Paris. This was Holland’s first loss in their las six international games.

The game started off really well, with both teams going hard in the first half. But the goals changed the dynamics of the match and both managers looked to make plenty of changes in the second half.

France looked to be the stronger of the two sides with a number of shots and looked much more comfortable in possession of the ball. Olivier Giroud who came on with 10 minutes to spare was not able to make much of an impression.

France made six changes while Netherlands made four.

The Holland management was concerned as Stijn Schaars had to come off just five minutes before the break as he sustained an injury.

Wesley Sneidjer did not have a good game and will have to improve if he wants to book a seat on the flight to Brazil for the World Cup. Robin van Persie was the best player for Holland on the night.

The game lacked the cutting edge fans expected. But overall the managers got a good insight before naming their respective squads of 32 for the World Cup.

Rajeev mcallister
Sports Pundit staff writer

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