With the November international break drawing to a close, several teams in UEFA chose to have friendly matches following their round of World Cup Qualifiers.
England and Spain were two of those teams who decided to schedule a friendly against one another. Wembley Stadium was the venue as the two sides faced off Tuesday afternoon.
England were coming off a 3-0 qualifying win last Friday vs Scotland, while Spain traveled to Macedonia and won 4-0 a day later.
Gareth Southgate‘s side took a 1-0 lead nine minutes in as Adam Lallana struck home from the penalty spot. England were awarded the opportunity after Spain keeper Jose Reina pulled down Jamie Vardy.
Vardy doubled England’s lead to 2-0 three minutes into the second half after a diving header from Jordan Henderson‘s cross. England looked to have iced the game early in the second half, but Spain had other ideas.
Late in the second stanza, Spain were more dominant to score and Iago Aspas brought them closer to a draw after a curling effort in the 89th went off the post and in. Substitute Isco scrambled home an equalizer in the 96th minute after his shot went through Tom Heaton‘s legs and found the back of the net.
At the final whistle, the score finished 2-2 at Wembley which saw Spain deny England a third victory under Southgate since his job as interim manager took off.
Spain led in possession 66%-34% while out-passing them 710-370. Heaton made three saves for the Three Lions, while Reina made two for the Spaniards. It was a tale of two halves as England looked very lively in the first half before conceding two late goals.
Adam Lallana made another great impression linking up with Vardy to win the penalty before going off injured 25 minutes in. Vardy who has been average at best so far this EPL season looked full of confidence after netting England’s second goal. Players like Raheem Sterling, Jesse Lingard, and Jordan Henderson all looked comfortable and full of energy which is a positive sign. The problem for England was their sloppy defending late against a side who looked a level down from their competitive win on Saturday.
Whether or not Southgate will remain as England boss following his four interim matches in charge is another question, but after two wins and two draws he definitely is deserving of a shot.