Fabio Capello was pleased to have been able to give debuts to three players last night at Wembley, and of the three, Carroll, Henderson and Jay Bothroyd, Newcastle’s Andy Carroll looked the most promising, as he put in an impressive display in a game where the service to him was very poor.
Andy Carroll – in action for England Wednesday night
Sunderland’s Jordan Henderson had a tough time coming to grips with the impressive France midfield, but he wasn’t the only one who struggled for England last night, and Gareth Barry also found the going very tough in that first 45 minutes, and was taken off at the break.
The 6’2″ Henderson is a player who does all the basic stuff great, and is an excellent all round footballer, and he will have learned a lot last night, which is one reason Fabio Capello wanted to take a look at the 20 year-old.
In the first half England could hardly get the ball, and when they did they then far too often gave it away, and France fully deserved to be 1-0 up at the break.
Carroll was efficient in what he did, and only once or twice in the game did he give the ball away, as he is quickly improving his hold-up game.
But you would have thought England had a 5’1″ striker leading the line, as England very rarely put any high balls into the penalty box, even though every time Andy went up for a header, a Frenchman was left sprawled on the ground, with Carroll usually having won the ball in the air.
Andy played for 75 minutes, a little longer than we expected, before he was replaced by Cardiff’s Jay Bothroyd.
In the second half France went further ahead until Peter Crouch got an opportunist late consolation goal for England.
After the game, England manager Fabio Capello said the following:
“It is important for me that some young players play here at Wembley against a good team like France.” “In this friendly fixture it was important to know the value of the young players.”
“I told the players it is different to play with the Under 21s than to play here against France.” “In the first half France played better, in the second half we played better.”
Last night was the very first time England had ever lost at the new Wembley Stadium.