EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFYING

Referee: Martin Hansson | Attendance: 86106

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England

  • Michael Owen 7'
  • Michael Owen 31'
  • Rio Ferdinand 84'

3 - 0

FT

  • 93'

    There it is. Full time and what a fine performance from England. A fully justified six points from their two games. There is hope after all. Bye for now.

  • 90'

    Pavluchenko goes down in the area pathetically, before man-of-the-match Michael Owen leaves the pitch to a huge cheer.

  • 90'

    England's fans are now cheering every pass as the home side wind down the clock. Three minutes of injury time to play.

  • 89'

    Well, there's a sign how comfortable England are, Stewart Downing is stripped and ready for action.

  • 88'

    Phil Neville comes on for Joe Cole as the game winds down.

  • 87'

    Another interception in his own box from Gerrard, who along with Barry, has been absolutely everywhere this evening. Who needs Lampard anyway?

  • 86'

    Well, what a week for England. They have outclassed Israel and Russia scoring six goals in the process. Perhaps Steve knows what he's doing after all eh?

  • 84'

    GOAL! England 3-0 Russia! And it's possibly England's worst performer on the night, Rio Ferdinand. Owen feeds him in the area, he faints then shoots and it squeezes under Malafeev. Icing. On. Cake.

  • 83'

    Calamity for Joe Cole! Owen puts him clear but he falls over himself and the ball is nipped from him. Then Owen tries to break into the area and secures another corner.

  • 82'

    Gerrard makes an important interception as Russia threaten once more, then Ferdinand dispenses with the fancy stuff and hoofs clear when the ball is returned.

  • 81'

    Crouch makes his presence felt immediately. He flicks on a cross and SWP fires in a shot which is well saved by Malafeev.

  • 80'

    Anyukov comes on for Kerzhakov for Russia.

  • 80'

    Crouch comes on for Heskey, who gets a standing ovation, and rightly so.

  • 79'

    Luckily the free-kick amounts to nothing. Crazy officiating.

  • 78'

    An amazing 30 seconds for Joe Cole. He wins the ball cleanly but the referee gives a free-kick, then as it is taken quickly he dives in again, wins the ball clearly again but the ref gives another free-kick and books him. Incredible.

  • 76'

    Robinson makes a smart save from Bilyaletdinov who shoots from the box edge. Ferdinand scrambles the loose ball clear.

  • 75'

    A great break from Gerrard who slips Owen through on the right but his ball to try and find SWP in the middle was awful - at odds with every else he's done this evening.

  • 74'

    Movement on the bench as Peter Crouch heads out to stretch his rather long legs.

  • 72'

    A huge waste by SWP and Richards who were two-on-one at the angle of the penalty area but showed no willingness to exploit it. Poor.

  • 71'

    Bilyaletdinov ruins a nice break with a scuffed shot from distance when they were plenty of other options.

  • 69'

    The game in London is going through a bit of a lull at present. Russia are knackered after their bright opening to the second half and England are enjoying plenty of possession without creating much.

  • 68'

    Apologies, a temporary distraction there as my eyes flicked to another screen to see James McFadden has just put Scotland ahead in France. As for the game at Wembley I'm going say that nothing happened in the last 90 seconds. I hope it didn't anyway.

  • 66'

    Heskey again wins a flick-on and Owen just can't get a toe-end on it.

  • 65'

    Heskey again wins good ball in the air but it drops just out of reach of Joe Cole.

  • 64'

    A strange period of play where Barry, Cole and Gerrard all could have had a punt from 25 yards but they try to be a bit too delicate, and Russia clear.

  • 63'

    Poor delivery from Bystrov allows England to clear. Then Robinson releases SWP and his cross is hacked out of play for a throw-in. Breathless stuff.

  • 61'

    Barry brings down Berezutsky on the right flank and Russia have a free-kick.

  • 60'

    A great chance for Gerrard, who mis-kicks a Joe Cole cross when just ten yards out. Nearly a clincher there.

  • 59'

    Still, an hour gone nearly and we remain at 2-0. Only just mind.

  • 58'

    It isn't often you cover your eyes every time Ferdinand is involved but he's making Titus Bramble look like Bobby Moore at the moment.

  • 56'

    Ferdinand is having a stinker. This time he fails to clear, allowing Zhirkov into the area before Gareth Barry intervenes.

  • 55'

    Rio again at fault, trying to bring the ball down on the edge of his area rather than stick a foot through it. Luckily he gets a free-kick for high feet.

  • 54'

    Steve McClaren screams at Stevie G to "keep the ball," as the rest of his team-mates seem intent on giving it away.

  • 53'

    Looks like Russia have gone 3-4-3 according to a chirpy Scouse co-commentator I can vaguely hear in the office. Hiddink has gone hell for leather in other words.

  • 52'

    England must hold firm at present. Russia are back.

  • 51'

    Ashley Cole is turned inside out by Bystrov after having gifted him the ball. The Russian winger goes down feebly inside the area though, allowing JT to clear.

  • 50'

    Hiddink must have slapped some faces in the Russian changing room because they've started strongly in the opening five minutes - in stark contrast to the way they began the evening.

  • 49'

    Up the other end Gerrard uses Owen's run as a decoy and fires a left foot shot that is well saved by Malafeev.

  • 48'

    Steve McClaren is only just appearing for the second half, just in time to see Russia go close again with a fizzing cross that just evades Sychev.

  • 47'

    Oh dear. It's all my fault because the moment I posted that Russia scorched up field and Sychev just misses with a flashing shot from a narrow angle. We (I) have been warned.

  • 46'

    Surely Russia can't be as bad this half. Can they? Well, yes, in the first 80 seconds they can.

  • 45'

    So, it's downhill from here eh? Sorry, that's not the most optimistic thought to start the second half is it?

  • 45'

    Half time. Rapturous applause for England after what must be their most convincing 45 minutes for a long, long time. A splendid start. Join us again in 15 mins after a Bovril...

  • 44'

    The Owen-Heskey combo works again. A looped ball from Owen finds Heskey, who controls well but his back heel doesn't find the onrushing SWP.

  • 43'

    Russia have retained possession well of late, but haven't created an opening...yet.

  • 42'

    An important few minutes approaching. No slip-ups before half-time please.

  • 41'

    Ferdinand hasn't had the most assured of games so far - this time a trickling cross somehow goes through his legs - but JT shows him the way with a fierce challenge to dispossess Zhirkov.

  • 40'

    Zhirkov tries a volley but it goes high, wide and downright ugly. The limping Semshov has been taken off and Bystrov is on in his place.

  • 39'

    Another break from Richards opens Russia up but his ball is long.

  • 38'

    The referee has let the game flow this half and again waves play on when Arshavin flings himself to the floor. Good on him.

  • 37'

    Gerrard slips Owen in again but the bounce just takes the ball away from him. He could be on for a treble hat-trick if he carries on like this...

  • 36'

    Owen should have taken a punt from 25 yards then, instead he tried to play in SWP and his cross fell straight to the keeper Malafeev.

  • 34'

    Guus Hiddink looks bemused on the sidelines. Don't bet against him having something handy up his sleeve mind...

  • 32'

    What an opening 33 minutes for England. Everything is coming off for McClaren. Barry is inspired in central midfield, Heskey is winning everything and Owen has been clinical. Why can't England play like this in big games more often?!

  • 31'

    GOAL! Owen again! Heskey wins a looping ball and when it falls into the path of Owen he lashes a shot into the top corner. Brilliant.

  • 30'

    Joe Cole unleashes from 20 yards and his shot takes a deflection, but the touch makes it an easier save for Malafeev.

  • 29'

    Sychev only just failed to get his head on a dangerous cross from Semshov, choosing instead to wave an arm in the ball's general direction.

  • 28'

    England are zipping the ball around well at present and as we approach the half-hour mark Steve McClaren must be delighted at this start.

  • 26'

    Sychev thrusts forward and wins a free-kick, but England clear their lines. A good spell for the Russians at present.

  • 24'

    A good save from Robinson. Bilyaletdinov strikes from 25 yards and he turns it round for a corner, which is cleared comfortably by England.

  • 23'

    Replays are far from conclusive about the disallowed goal. At the time it looked clear-cut but is anything but looking at it again.

  • 22'

    The Russians have woken up all of a sudden, and have started to look threatening. It's a far more open game than had been expected so far.

  • 21'

    And at the other end Shaun Wright-Phillips heads over after a great cross from the right by Joe Cole. A more subtle glance on it and we could have been staring open-mouthed at a 2-0 scoreline.

  • 20'

    A goal disallowed for Russia! The ref gave handball after Zurianov controlled in the area with his arm, before smashing it past Robinson.

  • 19'

    Barry again with a sumptuous ball for Heskey, who just strayed offside.

  • 17'

    Arshavin nearly had a run on goal after a hopeful punt from the half-way line, John Terry got back just in time...

  • 15'

    Gerrard blasts over from the edge of the box after Russia struggled to clear another good corner from Barry. They don't look at all comfortable with crosses being pinged into the area in the first quarter.

  • 14'

    Heskey has started condfidently after a strong showing on Saturday. He retains possession well again and after Barry finds Richards his attempted run and cross is thwarted.

  • 13'

    Bilyaletdinov goes close with a volley from an acute angle, after more good work from Zhirkov.

  • 11'

    A slip has just cost Owen another goal! A Gerrard ball found Heskey in the clear but his shot came back off the keeper. Just as Owen darted for it he lost his footing and Russia managed to clear..

  • 10'

    Micah Richards has begun in the same vein as he finshed the Israel game. Dangerous going forward and solid at the back. He breaks up play again.

  • 9'

    A big cheer goes up as Robinson manages to claim the corner, and not punch it into his own net somehow....

  • 8'

    Russia hit back straight away and Zhirkov wins a corner.

  • 8'

    GOAL! England 1-0 Russia! Michael Owen! A super cross from Barry drops at his feet and he has time to control and place a right foot shot into the net. Great start!

  • 7'

    Heskey shows his aerial prowess and an acrobatic attempt from Owen is blocked. Corner for England.

  • 6'

    A good break from Micah Richards who just can't reach Owen with his cross. Promising signs early on for England.

  • 5'

    A crunching sliding tackle from Gerrard earns a roar from the noisy home crowd.

  • 3'

    Ferdinand errors in trying to press and Barry clears for a corner from the resulting cross. England finally clear their lines..

  • 2'

    The home side certainly look up for it, hustling Russian players in possession and contesting strongly for every ball in the air....

  • 1'

    England pressing early on, nearly getting Ashley Cole in on the left-hand side...

  •  

    So, here we go. Make or break for McClaren...

  •  

    Good evening and welcome to live coverage of England's crucial, vital, critical, not to mention stupendously important Euro 2008 qualifier against Russia. Kick-off is 8pm.

COMPLETE TEAM CLOSE X
Goal Shot Video
  •  
  • Shots (on goal)

  • tackles

  • Fouls

  • possession

  • England

  • 13(8)

  • -

  • 11

  • 57%

    43%

  • Russia

  • 9(3)

  • -

  • 5

Match Stats

  • England
  • Russia
13(8) Shots (on goal) 9(3)
11 Fouls 5
4 Corner kicks 3
4 Offsides 1
57% Time of Possession 43%
1 Yellow Cards 0
0 Red Cards 0
5 Saves 6
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