England fail to beat World Cup rival again
England news: Roy Hodgson's side lacked quality in the second half against Montenegro
England, who had previously beaten San Marino 8-0 on Friday night, faced top of the table Montenegro in a clash which could potentially decide who would come out on top of the World Cup qualifying table come the end of the fixture list.
Roy Hodgson's side had trailed Montenegro by two points at the top of the table and had the chance to top the table had they beaten their counterparts.
A rambunctious set of fans caused an atmosphere second to none, as the two teams came out on to the field of play for the national anthems. Both sets of fans respectful to each other as 'God Save the Queen' was played first. Soon after, the national anthem of Montenegro was blasted out and the English fans looked blown away after the anthem had finished.
England, who were on top of Montenegro for a large majority of the game, soon scored after six minutes with a Wayne Rooney header from a corner taken by Steven Gerrard. England regained their dominance throughout the first half, as a conservative Montenegro barely threatened in the first half, with Rooney hitting the post from a chip early on in the half and England missing chances, which could have put England out of sight at the Half Time whistle. However, the opportunities throughout were wasted and at half-time England held a slender lead of 1-0.
However, in the second half, with Mirko Vucinic, the captain playing in a more favoured central role, the teams reversed in dominance, as Montenegro looked more lively throughout the second half. With England, looking both fatigued and lacklustre, Montenegro dominated and managed a break-through in the 77th minute, as England failed to clear the ball from a corner. Montenegro, who could have scored more in the second half, looked the more likely to be the winner.
Although. the introduction of Ashley Young proved key, as England soon started to make their way back into the match in the last 10 minutes. England, who had some late chances failed to breach a majorly shaky Montenegro defence and both teams looked to settle for an unlikely draw. Leaving England two points behind Montenegro with a repeat affair set for the final game in the group stage.
And with Poland and Ukraine both winning their matches England are most certainly not in a strong position within their group.
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