Roy Hodgson’s England team tonight showed strong signs of progress and a maturity that has been lacking for so long in the national team set up with a 2-1 victory over Brazil in last night’s friendly.
Wayne Rooney’s first half goal put England ahead after Joe Hart pulled of an impressive double save from a Ronaldinho penalty 20 minutes earlier. Brazil appeared comfortable early on and looked likely to take the lead when a cross from the left hand side of the penalty box struck the arm of England midfielder Jack Wilshere, but Manchester City keeper Hart came to his sides rescue with a brilliant save from the penalty.
England then got their passing game going, and looked confident and assured going forward, with Theo Walcott causing some real problems for the Brazilian defence. England then took the lead after a shot from Walcott was palmed back out by Julio Cesar, and Wayne Rooney was there to calmly tap in the rebound.
After the break, England looked less assured, and when Gary Cahill lost possession 30 yards from his own goal, Brazil broke through the England defence and played the ball through to half time substitute Fred who fired home the equaliser. England teams of the past may well have fell apart after suffering a setback against world class opposition like Brazil, but the Three Lions got back into the game and went ahead again after Frank Lampard struck a well-placed shot in off the post.
England held on and claimed their first victory against Brazil in 23 years, and gave the home supporters a sign of just what this England team is capable of producing against the very best in world football.