FT: San Marino 0 England 8

Final whistle blows right on the 90-minute mark. Job done. Really little more to say than that after an efficient, clinical performance from England against opponents out of their depth.

Scott Parker gives away a free-kick. That should be that.

Osman wins a free-kick in the centre-circke. There will be no added time.

Osman gives the ball away and then concedes a free-kick.

Osman clips a cross in from the left, but it's easy for Simoncini.

Another chance for Defoe to get his third but his cross-shot ends up being neither one thing nor the other.

Young and Sturridge not quite on the same wavelength as they look to pick a path through the San Marino defence.

Chance for Defoe to complete his hat-trick, but he heads wide from Oxlade-Chamberlain's cross.

England still playing with purpose here. The three substitutes have all looked busy and helped keep the intensity high despite the game being long over.

Carlo Valentini replaces Bollini.

Nice run and shot from Osman, but he drags it just wide.

Oxlade-Chamberlain's cutback is well held by Simoncini.

GOAL - DEFOE! Smartly done again as Walker gets to the byline and cuts the ball back for Defoe to turn it home at the near post.

Baines' free-kick works the keeper, but he beats it away to safety.

Danillo Rinaldi replaces Selva.

Oxlade-Chamberlain wins a free-kick, very much in shooting range.

Montenegro have won 1-0 in Chisinau so retain top spot in the group ahead of Tuesday night's crucial clash.

The corner is half-cleared, prompting more careful build-up play from England in front of the massed San Marino defences.

Walker wins a corner on the right-hand side.

GOAL - STURRIDGE! Yes, the opposition is barely existent, but it's another well-worked England goal as Defoe slips the ball through for Young to stand up a cross to the back post where Sturridge this time makes no mistake.

Lorenzo Buscarini replaces Cibelli for San Marino. Lescott now has the captain's armband for England.

Roy Hodgson taking no chances after seeing San Marino win that corner, bringing on Scott Parker for Lampard to add some solidity to midfield.

Walker powers forward, taking the ball as far away from embarassment as possible before finding Osman who shoots just over.

The corner is a decent one, just evading Della Valle and bouncing fortuitously into the arms of Hart off Walker.


A shot on goal from San Marino. Bollini sends it high and wide, but it's a legitimate attempt on goal, greeted with sarcastic cheers from the elite athletes who make up the England support.

Defoe in behind the San Marino defence but shoots wide.

What a miss! Oxlade-Chamberlain stands the ball up to the back post for substitute Sturridge, but he contrives to head the ball against the post from no more than a yard out.

Clumsy challenge earns Michele Cervellini a yellow card. San Marino players understandably tiring as they chase the game.

Hart gets another touch, to the delight of the travelling support.


A foul throw from Walker hands possession to San Marino. Will it prove costly?

Double change for England, who must feel that the game is safe now they've got that all-important sixth goal. Daniel Sturridge and Leon Osman replace Rooney and Cleverley.

Bad news for England: Montenegro lead in Chisinau.

GOAL - ROONEY! The striker clips the ball up and over the wall and into the bottom corner. Keeper couldn't get across to cover the half of the goal nominally protected by the wall.

Davide Simoncini booked for a foul on Tom Cleverley. Free-kick to England in shooting range.

The ball ricochets into the England penalty box and Hart enthusiastically runs for it. Something to do.

Selva flagged offside for the second time tonight.

San Marino positives: they're quite good at defending corners.

England eventually work the ball to Rooney 20 yards out, who ships a shot goalwards and Simoncini tips it over the bar.

Patient passing football from England now. Not sure how much effort they'll put in to the pursuit of further goals here.

Defoe flagged offside as he runs on to Lampard's dinked pass. Replays show it's another poor decision. The officials have certainly shown the hosts some sympathy tonight.

San Marino string together a four-pass move inside their own half.

Oxlade-Chamberlain wins a free-kick on halfway.

San Marino get the second half under way.

Montenegro down to 10 men in Moldova now. Still goalless.

The half-time whistle blows. England have done what they needed to do.

Well-timed run from Defoe gets him behind the San Marino back nine. He finds Rooney, but his shot lacks power and is easily gathered by Simoncini.

Young and Baines try to link up again down the left, but this time the threat is snuffed out.

GOAL - LAMPARD! Another nicely-constructed England goal as Young plays in Baines, whose cutback is dummied by Rooney and sidefooted home by Lampard. Let's never speak again of my 3-0 prediction.

San Marino's Andy Selva flagged offside. Might be as good as it gets for the hosts.

GOAL - YOUNG! A goal worthy of a grander stage as Young rifles a 25-yard strike off the underside of the crossbar and into the back of the net.

Young tries to cut the ball back to Oxlade-Chamberlain, but Della Valle intercepts and brings the ball clear.

Good dipping shot from Lampard bounces in front of the San Marino keeper who grabs hold at the second attempt.

Defoe looking to get on the end of Baines' first-time pass but goalkeeper Simoncini is out smartly to gather at the striker's feet.

GOAL - DEFOE! Defoe not to be denied for long as Rooney's cross is nodded back across goal by Oxlade-Chamberlain to give the striker the easiest of finishes.

The linesman helps San Marino out again. Having let the keeper off for picking the ball up outside his area, he now denies Defoe a goal even though the striker was clearly behind Young when he squared the ball for the Spurs striker to tap in.

Baines' fizzing corner is aimed at Lescott on the near post, but the massed blue shirts of San Marino get the ball away from the danger area.

Walker drives past the San Marino left-back and looks to find Spurs team-mate Defoe with a low cross, but it's diverted behind for England corner number 13.

Lampard's backheel doesn't quite pick out another smart run from Oxlade-Chamberlain, and San Marino clear.

Lescott heads a long ball back to Hart, who dirties his gloves for the first time tonight.

GOAL - OXLADE-CHAMBERLAIN! Well-worked second goal from England as Walker links up with Oxlade-Chamberlain initially before the Arsenal winger plays a one-two with Rooney and then fires the ball past the keeper.

Another corner. Another clearance.

Walker can't quite keep the ball in play on the right-hand side and another England move breaks down.

Fabio Bollini fouls Oxlade-Chamberlain in midfield.

You're laughing if you went over on England corners. Already in double-figures. Nothing has come from any of them, though.

A heavy touch from Young when well placed allows a defender to get a foot on the Manchester United man's shot and divert the ball behind for what can now safely be described as Yet Another Corner.

Defoe crowded out in the penalty area and Enrico Cibelli clears.

Probably more significant for England than events here are those in Chisinau where Group H leaders Montenegro are taking on Moldova. The good news for England is it's goalless at half-time.

The first corner produces a second. This one's cleared.

Baines free-kick fails to clear the first man, but England win a corner as Rooney tries to play in Young and one defender hammers the ball into another.

Della Valle fouls Baines to give England a set-piece opportunity wide on the left.

Baines swings the corner over, Lampard heads over the bar.

Rooney moves out to the right and picks out a decent cross. Defoe unintentionally tees up Oxlade-Chamberlain, whose shot is deflected behind for another corner.

Good defending from San Marino on the edge of their box, denying England an easy ball through and eventually clearing the ball as Lampard looks to play in Walker on the right.

Baines appears to over-run the ball on the left but manages to dig out a cross. No white shirt in position to capitalise, though, and San Marino clear.

England knocking the ball around in midfield.

Lampard flicks on Baines' corner. The ball bounces to Defoe at the back post, but his instinctive header is over the bar.

Davide Simoncini knocks the ball out for a corner under pressure from Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Let-off for the San Marino keeper who comes to the edge of his area to gather a cross and, after dropping it, grabs it when it has clearly gone out of the area.

Walker breaks down the right-hand side but is penalised for a foul on Palazzi as he tries to run past the left-back.

OWN GOAL - DELLA VALLE! Baines' low cross from the left is diverted past his own keeper by centre-back Alessandro Della Valle with Rooney lurking ready to tap it home himself.

Defoe caught offside.

Off the bar! Great skill from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, running onto the ball as Rooney chests it into his path and then lifting the ball over the San Marino keeper only to see the ball cannon back off the crossbar.

The corner is cleared and for the first time San Marino have the ball in England's half. But not for long. The visitors back in possession, and the ball is passed back to Joe Hart to give the keeper his first touch of the evening.

Rooney and Young combine to win another corner for England. Predictably one-way traffic at this stage, but San Marino holding on.

A sequence of three England corners comes to an end as Simoncini punches confidently clear.

Save! The free-kick breaks to Lampard on the corner of the six-yard box, but his effort is parried behind for a corner by Simoncini.

Kyle Walker fouled by Marco Palazzi. Free-kick to England wide on the right.

The corner is cut back to Young, whose cross finds Joleon Lescott but is just too high for the Manchester City defender to control his header and direct it goalwards.

Rooney beats a slipshod offside trap, but Lampard's dinked throughball won't sit down for the striker to hit which allows a defender to get back and divert the ball behind.

Nothing comes from the corner as Lampard, under heavy pressure, heads well wide of the target.

Defoe runs down the inside-left channel and cuts the ball back for the onrushing Frank Lampard, but the ball is scrambled behind for a corner.

Leighton Baines' cross deflects into the arms of Aldo Simoncini.

Nice passing move from England ends with Wayne Rooney trying but just failing to slip the ball through for Jermain Defoe.

Long ball evades Ashley Young and goes out for a San Marino throw.

England get the game under way.

Fifteen minutes until kick-off, and we've just seen the first replay of Davide Gualtieri's goal from 1993. Won't be the last.

George from Hamilton, Canada: "This is a great chance for Hodgson to start some young talent. He needs to see superior play from guys like Cleverly, Smalling and Oxlade, this could be their last chance to show off. Happy to see Defoe and Lescott starting. England wins 6-0."

Our referee tonight is Alain Bieri from Switzerland.

San Marino: Aldo Simoncini, Fabio Vitaioli, Palazzi, Alessandro Della Valle, Davide Simoncini, Cervellini, Gasperoni, Cibelli, Fabio Bollini, Selva, Matteo Vitaioli. Subs: Federico Valentini, Bacciocchi, Bianchi, Buscarini, Coppini, Alex Della Valle, Rinaldi, Carlo Valentini, Vannucci

England: Hart, Walker, Smalling, Lescott, Baines, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lampard, Cleverley, Young, Rooney, Defoe. Subs: Foster, Parker, Cole, Taylor, Caulker, Milner, Gerrard, Carrick, Osman, Welbeck, Sturridge, Forster

The full team news is in...

Pete Shields with another call for Taylor: "The England side looks pretty good to me. We may have lost a few of our better players, especially Jack Wilshere, England's best player, for me, but we still have far too much quality, surely, for San Marino. I would have been tempted to play Steven Taylor, he's been exceptional for Newcastle lately.

Connor Robson: "I think that tonight Hodgson should have started Caulker and Taylor at centre back because they've both been in both form for their clubs and deserve a start, plus it will give Smalling and Lescott a rest beflre the Montenegro game. I think the final score will be 4-0."

As the match itself is unlikely to be too much of a spectacle, how about a cheeky wager on the action? England to win 7-0 seems to be a popular shout with you lot, and Sky Bet have boosted their price on that scoreline to 17/2. If you want an even fancier price, then Defoe to score first in an 8-0 win is 33/1. If, like me, you think England might not find things quite that easy, you can get 9/4 for the Three Lions to win either 3-0 or 4-0. Head to skybet.com for a whole host of betting opportunities pre-match and in-play.

"I reckon 4-0 or 5-0, probably won't break through till later in first half," predicts Tel. Wouldn't be a shock. My bold prediction is for the game to be goalless after 30 minutes.

Oliver Gottlieb: "I support Everton so I'm glad to see Baines in the staring line up. They should let him play more attacking, though. He's a great defender but he's very good at creating chances on the wing and crossing the ball. I think this should be an easy win but it's a chance for the players to get used to playing with each other despite their different styles of play."

Frank Lampard, winning his 95th cap, will captain England tonight with Steven Gerrard rested.

Three predictions in so far: 7-0, 8-0, 7-0. Not to the home side. This will no doubt make me look VERY silly later on, but I think there's a decent chance that England 'only' win about 3-0 due to some profligate finishing and players with an eye on bigger battles to come. That, if nothing else, should ensure that England score eight. Or none at all.

Let us know your thoughts on the action tonight - predictions, rants, raves and so forth - by emailing Dave.Tickner@bskyb.com

England team: Hart; Walker, Smalling, Lescott, Baines; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Lampard, Cleverley, Young; Rooney, Defoe.

Evening and welcome to our live coverage of a fixture that stretches the cliche that there are "no easy games at international level" well beyond its elastic limit. Less a question of if than how many as England gear up for the real test againt Montenegro on Tuesday night.


There are no fixtures at present.

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