F365's England v Poland Player Ratings

Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney led by example as England secured their place at the World Cup, but Danny Welbeck was predictably frustrating...

Last Updated: 16/10/13 at 08:11 Post Comment

Latest Articles

Football Folk On TV: Robbie Savage

28 comments

He's the driver of the banter bus who's the most likely man in football to tell you the price of his watch. But is Robbie Savage actually just a vulnerable puppy in a harsh world?

All Articles

JOE HART
Commanded his area well and raced out to deny Robert Lewandowski on the hour mark. The Borussia Dortmund striker must be sick of facing England's number one.


CHRIS SMALLING
Looked nervous in the opening stages and conceded a free-kick on the edge of the box with a clumsy challenge. Roy Hodgson is clearly a big fan, though, despite Smalling's lack of football at Manchester United. His versatility and mysterious hex over Hodgson should see him make the plane for Brazil, but it's time for the 23-year-old to force himself past the rapidly ageing Rio Ferdinand at Old Trafford.


PHIL JAGIELKA
The less you notice Jagielka and Gary Cahill, the less you have to worry about the stark decline in quality of England's centre-back options. That's perhaps a slight disservice to Jagielka, who is the better of the duo, and extremely prudent in possession. As England pressed in the first half, the Everton man stepped up to support the midfield, providing the third-most passes and recording a joint-high accuracy of 94%. Perhaps we should thank Roberto Martinez for that.


GARY CAHILL
Made a crucial block to deny Mateusz Klich immediately after half-time but then allowed Lewandowski to evade him for a brilliant chance at 1-0. Fortunately Hart came to the rescue and the keeper will need to maintain his level of awareness to mop up after Cahill's occasional brainfades in Brazil.


LEIGHTON BAINES
The left-back has given Hodgson real food for thought with his performances against Montenegro and Poland, providing a beautiful cross for Wayne Rooney to head England into the lead on Tuesday. Baines was guilty of being caught out of position in the first half as Poland counter-attacked at speed, but there is little between the Everton man and current first choice, Ashley Cole. Baines' quality of delivery could see him shade this particular battle over the next seven months.


MICHAEL CARRICK
Provided the platform for England's attack to express themselves and sprayed a perfect first-time ball to Baines in the build-up to the opening goal. As well as offering everything we expected - most passes in the first half, highest accuracy, etc - Carrick's presence allowed Gerrard to push on and link with Rooney, which is such a crucial advantage for England. It was a surprise to see him replaced by Frank Lampard with 20 minutes remaining, but perhaps Hodgson was worried about those lost leads away to Poland and Montenegro when Carrick was overrun.


STEVEN GERRARD
It wasn't his tidiest performance in the second half, but it was fitting that Gerrard fought his way through the Polish defence to score the goal that sealed the win and secured England's place in Brazil. The tedious tribal nature of football means that Gerrard is never given the credit he deserves for his England displays, but the captain has been the Three Lions' most influential player during Hodgson's reign. "I'd be the proudest man in the country if we get the win we're after," said the skipper before his gut-busting 90 minutes. We're lucky to have him.


ANDROS TOWNSEND
A second helping of humble pie for Football365 after Townsend embodied England's intent before the break in another impressive performance. He may have lost the ball the first time he had possession - and twice more in the opening ten minutes - but he showed smart movement to drift inside and test Wojciech Szczesny with a low drive and later thumped the crossbar with a fantastic strike from the edge of the box. With three of his five crosses in the first half finding a teammate, perhaps Townsend isn't the wasteful so-and-so we've seen in a Spurs shirt so far this season.


DANNY WELBECK
A poor night that settled Tuesday's debate with Daniel Storey. As if I had anything to fear. Welbeck failed to hit the target with any of his five attempts, looked hesitant and clumsy in possession and blasted wide when it was easier to score on the half-hour mark. He may have worked hard, tracked back and done all the other things we expected, but Townsend's rise should be as much a concern to Welbeck as it is to James Milner. It should be, but that won't necessarily be the case owing to Hodgson's faith in the Man United forward.


WAYNE ROONEY
Quiet for the first ten minutes before bursting into life and playing a key role in England's victory. His understanding with Gerrard was exemplified by his volleyed pass to the captain in the first half, who then returned the favour for Welbeck which predictably saw an encouraging move break down. Rooney underlined his importance with a well-placed header to give England the lead and nearly added a second with a curling drive that brought a stunning save from Szczesny. Fingers crossed he's in one of his purple patches when England land in Brazil next June.


DANIEL STURRIDGE
Seemed to take more touches than necessary at times, but has provided a real focal point to the attack ahead of Rooney and forced Szczesny into two smart saves as England sought to extend their lead. The beetroot-stained Rickie Lambert love affair was short-lived.


FRANK LAMPARD (on for Carrick, 71)
Presumably introduced to provide some composure as England began to look a little ragged. Failed completely in that respect, recording a pass accuracy of just 67%.


JACK WILSHERE (on for Sturridge, 82)
Three touches, all good.


JAMES MILNER (on for Townsend, 86)
Had a shot and created a chance for a teammate in four minutes on the field. Who said functional can't be sexy?

Matt Stanger - he's on the Twitter.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

t's why Mourinho is so successful. He gives players a specific, limited set of functions to perform. They are but a cog in a machine. Do no more, do no less. I assume he learnt it from LvG :)

red_devil83
Fellaini Has Politely Become Undroppable

I

really hope that someone in the mainstream media spots that the Bayern manager played for and managed Barcelona quite well, and thinks to mention it in the build up. That would be really interesting.

megabrow (cufc)
Barcelona to face Bayern

Y

our gob says one thing, Brendan, the results say something else.

balls-to-monty
Rodgers bullish over Anfield future

Latest Photos

Footer 365

Eden Hazard lands PFA Player of the Year award

Chelsea midfielder Eden Hazard has been named the PFA Player of the Year.

Harry Kane lands PFA Young Player of the Year award

Tottenham striker Harry Kane has been named the PFA Young Player of the Year.

Arsene Wenger says it is impossible for Chelsea to lose title

Arsene Wenger believes it is just a matter of time before Chelsea are crowned champions after their 0-0 draw at Arsenal.

Mail Box

Chelsea Millions Should Buy Better...

For the money they have spent, Chelsea should be playing like the Harlem Globetrotters rather than Atletico. We have mails on Cesc, Brendan Rodgers and...

Brendan Rodgers Is David Cameron...

Rodgers is compared to the Prime Minister, insomuch as he has a right to peddle bulls**t, apparently. Plus why comparing Arsene Wenger to Diego Simeone is a mug's game...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company