Featured Matches
Previous
Aston Villa
Hull City
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Tottenham Hotspur
Liverpool
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Leicester City
Arsenal
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
AC Milan
Lazio
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Villarreal
Barcelona
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Real Madrid
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Aston Villa
Hull City
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Tottenham Hotspur
Liverpool
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Leicester City
Arsenal
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Villarreal
Barcelona
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Deportivo La Coruña
Rayo Vallecano
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Real Madrid
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Elche
Granada
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Mainz
Hannover 96
1:30 PM GMT
Game Details
SC Freiburg
Borussia Monchengladbach
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
AC Milan
Lazio
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Atalanta
Hellas Verona
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Cesena
Parma
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Genoa
Napoli
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Palermo
Sampdoria
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Sassuolo
Cagliari
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Torino
Internazionale
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Udinese
Empoli
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Bordeaux
Bastia
12:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Metz
Lyon
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Paris Saint-Germain
St Etienne
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Notts County
Bristol City
2:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Dundee
Celtic
11:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Llagostera
Leganes
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Betis
Numancia
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Gijon
Ponferradina
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Alavés
Recreativo Huelva
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Mallorca
Las Palmas
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
SV Sandhausen
FC Ingolstadt 04
11:30 AM GMT
Game Details
TSV 1860 Munich
SV Darmstadt 98
11:30 AM GMT
Game Details
TSV Eintracht Braunschweig
VfL Bochum
11:30 AM GMT
Game Details
PSV Eindhoven
Vitesse Arnhem
10:30 AM GMT
Game Details
FC Groningen
Ajax Amsterdam
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
NAC Breda
PEC Zwolle
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Twente Enschede
Feyenoord Rotterdam
2:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Roda JC Kerkrade
MVV Maastricht
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Gil Vicente
Maritimo
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Penafiel
Paços de Ferreira
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
CD Nacional de Madeira
Arouca
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Porto
Moreirense
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Benfica
Sporting Lisbon
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
CSKA Moscow
Rostov
9:30 AM GMT
Game Details
FK Rubin Kazan
FC Ufa
12:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Lokomotiv Moscow
Zenit St Petersburg
2:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Krasnodar
Dinamo Moscow
4:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Erciyesspor
Trabzonspor
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Sivasspor
Gaziantepspor
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Balikesirspor
Akhisar Belediye
Postp
Game Details
Caykur Rizespor
Genclerbirligi
Postp
Game Details
Fenerbahce
Karabukspor
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Asteras Tripoli
Levadiakos
4:15 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Xanthi
Kerkyra
4:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Niki Volos
Atromitos
4:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Platanias
PAOK Salonika
4:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Panathinaikos
Panionios
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Club Brugge
Anderlecht
12:30 PM GMT
Game Details
KSC Lokeren
Standard Liege
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Royal Charleroi SC
KV Mechelen
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rapid Vienna
SV Grodig
2:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Silkeborg IF
AaB
11:00 AM GMT
Game Details
FC Midtjylland
Esbjerg
1:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Nordsjaelland
Brøndby
3:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Odense BK
FC Copenhagen
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
IFK
Kalmar FF
1:00 PM GMT
Game Details
IFK Norrkoping
AIK
1:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Djurgarden
Malmo FF
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Elfsborg
Falkenbergs FF
3:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Helsingborg
Halmstad
Postp
Game Details
Orebro SK
Brommapojkarna
Postp
Game Details
Lillestrom
Haugesund
1:30 PM GMT
Game Details
IK Start
Sogndal
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Stabaek
Sandnes Ulf
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Viking FK
Rosenborg
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
SK Brann
Molde
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Grasshoppers
FC Vaduz
11:45 AM GMT
Game Details
St Gallen
FC Zürich
11:45 AM GMT
Game Details
FC Basel
Young Boys
2:00 PM GMT
Game Details
DC United
New York Red Bulls
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Chivas USA
Los Angeles Galaxy
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Toluca
Veracruz
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Guadalajara
Cruz Azul
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Edmonton
Minnesota United FC
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Belgrano de Córdoba
Atletico Rafaela
6:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Independiente
Racing Club
6:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Atletico Rafaela
Gimnasia La Plata
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Boca Juniors
Vélez Sarsfield
9:15 PM GMT
Game Details
San Lorenzo
River Plate
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Botafogo
Santos FC
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Corinthians
Fluminense FC
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
Atlético MG
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Figueirense FC
São Paulo
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Sport
Criciúma
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
EC Vitória
Flamengo
9:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Goiás EC
Atletico Paranaense
9:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Gremio
Bahia
9:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Universidad Católica
O'Higgins
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Universidad de Concepción
Unión La Calera
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Cobresal
Cobreloa
7:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Municipal Iquique
Barnechea
7:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Audax Italiano
Ñublense
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Atenas
Racing (U)
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rampla Juniors
River Plate
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rentistas
Sud América
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Wanderers
Danubio F.C.
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Cerro
Juventud
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Peñarol
Tacuarembó FC
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Envigado
Deportivo Pasto
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Deportivo Cali
Atlético Junior
8:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Deportes Tolima
Once Caldas
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Independiente Medellín
Aguilas Doradas
10:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Millonarios
Independiente Santa Fe
12:45 AM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Cristal
Los Caimanes
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Sport Huancayo
UTC
6:15 PM GMT
Game Details
León de Huánuco
Inti Gas Deportes
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Olimpia
Cerro Porteño
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Sportivo Luqueño
General Díaz
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Rubio Ñú
Deportivo Capiatá
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Guaraní
Libertad
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
El Nacional
Mushuc Runa
4:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Manta F.C.
U. Católica
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Club Deportivo Cuenca
Deportivo Quito
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Olmedo
Liga de Loja
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Barcelona
LDU Quito
9:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Independiente del Valle
Emelec
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Atlético Venezuela
Deportivo Anzoategui
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Deportivo Petare
Carabobo
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Estudiantes de Mérida
Deportivo Lara
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Llaneros
Tucanes
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Mineros
Caracas F.C.
Postp
Game Details
Portuguesa
Zulia
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Club Petrolero de Yacuiba
Nacional Potosí
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Sport Boys Warnes
Wilstermann
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Real Potosí
San José
7:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Universitario de Sucre
Bolívar
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Oriente Petrolero
Blooming
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Mamelodi Sundowns
Amazulu
1:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Silver Stars
Bloem Celtic
1:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Cartagines
Perez Zeledon
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Belen
Carmelita
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Universidad De Costa Rica
Limon
7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Club Sport Uruguay
Saprissa
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Malacateco
Xelaju
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Suchitepequez
Petapa
5:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Coatepeque
Universidad de San Carlos
6:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Penarol
Municipal
Postp
Game Details
C.D.Real Sociedad
Vida
8:00 PM GMT
Game Details
CD Motagua
Olimpia
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Marathon
Real Espana
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Seattle Reign FC
FC Kansas City
ESPN2 7:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
Manchester CityManchester City
Stoke CityStoke City
0
1
FT
Game Details
Newcastle UnitedNewcastle United
Crystal PalaceCrystal Palace
3
3
FT
Game Details
Feb 6, 2013

England pounce on lazy Brazil

It was just like watching Brazil. That's if you consider Brazil to be an ill-prepared team struggling for identity and looking for a formula. Such complaints have been constantly levelled at England down the years but it was the five-times world champions who looked bereft and disorganised.

The concept of the friendly international is a troubled one in football. In rugby and cricket, the game's closest equivalents as world games, there are test matches between international teams. To label a game friendly lessens its importance, especially when historic giants take each other on. England played as if they considered this as a competitive match, a full international in its ancient sense. Victory was celebrated with gusto, though the credibility of their achievement was somewhat diminished by the visible laxness of Brazil, who in mitigation had trained together just once after arrival in London.

Luiz Felipe Scolari, presiding over his first match as national coach since winning the 2002 World Cup in Yokohama, was in experimental mode, blending old favourites and new fancies. Neither faction will have impressed a host country beginning to get panicky about prospects of avoiding embarrassment at their own World Cup. Such concerns looked wholly understandable.

Roy Hodgson's approach was far more ambitious. It resulted in a full-strength England team giving their best showing under Hodgson. Brazilian flair was negated by English athleticism and determination and the pyrotechnics were by no means confined to the South American visitors.

Envious glances might have been cast at a few of Hodgson's options. Wayne Rooney is surely preferable to the sluggishness that Ronaldinho and Luis Fabiano exhibited. Judging by the strikers Scolari employed, there are distinct problems in that department. Fabiano, the hothead who never looked quite good enough to lead the line at South Africa 2010, was meek before half time, and replaced by heavy-looking Fred.

Leandro Damiao and Willian, two big names from the transfer window, were not even in the squad. Fred's impact with a goal and another shot that hit the crossbar provided some solace, but 2014's hosts look short of striking class. A clumsy late slip also suggested that Fred was no inarguable panacea. To win the World Cup in their Brazilian backyard, an expectation they cannot fail to meet, requires a striker of the class of previous generations. The new Romario or Ronaldo is yet to be unearthed.

Ashley Cole and Ronaldinho were the sole survivors of the countries' last competitive meeting, Shizuoka 2002, where the eventual champions ended England's dreaming. Coincidence dictated that both would win their 100th cap on their reunion. While Ronaldinho took part in a presentation, Cole chose not to. Instead, Steven Gerrard took official acclaim for passing that mark against Sweden in November. Cole satisfied himself with the applause that greeted his name when the teams were read at kick-off.

Neither centurion lasted beyond the break. Both 32, it was Ronaldinho who looked far more depreciated by time, though Cole did not much enjoy playing against Oscar, looking far happier than of late in a Chelsea shirt.

Ronaldinho, a former world player of the year, suffered in stark comparison to his previous pre-eminence. The feint and body swerve are still employed. They just take far longer to pull off. They are hugely less effective too. When Jack Wilshere paid the penalty for a handball, Ronaldinho stepped up gaily, and far too casually. Joe Hart saved to his left, and the rebound was cleared too. The one-time prince of Brazilian football had blown the chance to win over his old boss. He waddled off at half-time, looking a man incapable of arresting visible decline.

The battle of the current boy wonders handed further honours to England. Neymar repeated the fitful flitting of his previous match in this stadium, the Olympic football final. Early on, he was beaten for pace by Gary Cahill, no speed merchant he. Thereafter, he was negligible. The hype did not look worth believing, though Scolari blamed a lack of preparation for Neymar's inability to recreate his club form for Santos.

Hodgson handed credit for Neymar's quiet night to his defenders. "He runs with the ball very well. It was pretty obvious what he's about," said Hodgson. "Corporately, as a team we didn't allow him to isolate one defender."

"I think it was a physical problem that we have," was how cheery Uncle Phil explained his team's shortcomings and those of Neymar in particular. He still looked richly happy to be back in England, perhaps mindful of a hot reception back home.

Wilshere, meanwhile, repeatedly surged deep into Brazil's backline, always seeking involvement, granted creative responsibility by Steven Gerrard's anchor role. The captain was disciplined and determined in support."Very good," was Scolari's brief but glowing assessment of Wilshere.

The young Gunner's zeal galvanised a previous prodigy in Rooney. The younger man played in Theo Walcott, whose shot was blocked. Rooney fizzed the loose ball into the goal for England's first and enjoyed himself from there on, his passing especially good. His neat flick, of the type Ronaldinho once perfected and now only aspires to, set up Frank Lampard's winner. The veteran, on for a neat and tidy Tom Cleverly and nearing his own century, scored with a shot that resembled a nine-iron chip. The ball rimmed the cup and eventually nestled in the net.

England's winner wiped out what Hodgson called a "mad spell" at the beginning of the second half. Cahill's loose pass found only Fred and the substitute's shot, with considerable bulk behind it, screamed past Hart. Moments later, a Smalling error allowed Fred another chance. Hart was beaten again, though the crossbar kept the ball out.

Rooney's visible anger showed off his desire to beat Brazil. Cahill's dejection at his error and a goalward header saved soon after revealed this as a collective determination that was eventually rewarded.

England had beaten Brazil. Now to answer the question of whether they will actually qualify for Brazil next year.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.