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March 5, 2014
• Wembley Stadium, London
Referee: K. Blom
• Attendance: 68573
D. Sturridge 82'
Thanks for joining me for tonight's game. Good night!
Not the exciting encounter we had all hoped for but Roy Hodgson will be pleased with what was, in the end, a worthwhile exercise.
Adam Lallana, meanwhile, proved to be the game-changing substitution. His touch and ability proved key to carving open the Denmark defence and it was his delicate cross which found Sturridge for the only goal of the game.
The three big winners of the night have to be Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Adam Lallana. The Liverpool duo were menacing throughout and created many of England's best moments between themselves.
Not a great performance from England by any stretch of the imagination but Roy Hodgson's men come away with a win thanks to Daniel Strurridge's headed goal eight minutes from time. Denmark proved a solid, resolute opposition, who themselves rarely threatened to test Joe Hart.
FULL-TIME: England 1-0 Denmark
90' + 2'
Another free kick inside the England half and Denmark send everyone bar the goalkeeper forward. The delivery is a good one and Joe Hart only just sees it flash past his far post. Any contact and you'd imagine the scores would be level.
England's goalscorer Sturridge is replaced by Milner. A Denmark free kick is taken by Kvist from a deep position in the England half. He feeds the ball towards the back post, where Agger slides in but can't get a touch. Two minutes to be added on.
Just been informed that the 68,000 inside Wembley tonight represents the biggest football crowd in Europe this evening.
Denmark look very unlikely to get anything from this game now, as England move the ball effortlessly across midfield. Raheem Sterling, one of England's standout players tonight, gets a warm round of applause as he jogs off. Andros Townsend takes his place.
Also, it must be said, since Wayne Rooney's departure, Sturridge has moved into a central position in attack and England have looked a much more potent threat in the final third.
GOAL! Daniel Sturridge breaks the deadlock for England with a close-range header after a fine cross from Adam Lallana who has been very good since his introduction. It took a long time coming, but England finally have a breakthrough!
Adam Lallana has been instrumental in the few chances England have created since coming on. He is doing his chances of making the World Cup squad no harm at all.
Denmark are doing their best to take the sting out of the game now. Incredibly frustrating for the likes of Shaw, Lallana and Oxlade-Chamberlain who are chomping at the bit to impress Roy Hodgson.
Roy Hodgson throws on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in place of Jordan Henderson as he tries to maintain the pressure heading into the final quarter of an hour. The last ten minutes have been England's best of the night.
CHANCE! Lallana finds Sturridge with a short pass in the area and the Liverpool striker stings the hands of Schmeichel with a powerful effort. Denmark then deal with a series of corners from the Three Lions. The crowd finally come alive inside Wembley Stadium.
Some belief injected into the crowd after a couple of waves from pressure. England fans can now feel the goal coming...
GREAT SAVE! Very good goalkeeping from Schmeichel to deny Welbeck again! The Denmark stopper did well to rush out and close down a shot from the Manchester United man after some fine probing work from Sterling. England have gone up a gear since the introduction of Lallana and Welbeck.
GOOD SAVE! Schmeichel to the rescure for Denmark and it's a fine stop too. Danny Welbeck wrestles off a challenge to fire a shot away inside the box. The effort is struck with pace but the opposition stopper gets a strong hand to direct the parry away from the loitering Sturridge.
GOOD SAVE! Joe Hart denies Rasmussen in a one-on-one situation. England are all over the place at the back and between them allow the ball to slither out to the Danish forward who looked odds on to score. Thankfully for Hodgson, his goalkeeper was out in a flash to make a fine stop.
Yellow CardMorten Rasmussen
Glen Johnson is caught in possession high up the pitch by Krohn-Delhi but his club and national team skipper, Steven Gerrard, is there to cover and bail his team-mate out of trouble.
England drive forward through Luke Shaw, who is already exciting the fans here at Wembley, but Sturridge's cross which follows is too high and floats into the goalkeeper's arms and away from Welbeck's head.
First Rooney and then Gerrard both try their luck from range but neither really test Schmeichel in the Denmark goal. Welbeck and Lallana both enter the action, let's see if they can inject some creativity into England's performance.
CHANCE! Best sight of goal of the night for Nicklas Bendtner but the Arsenal striker's shot is tame and easily gathered by Joe Hart.
Unfortunately the set-piece comes to nothing but that little exchange got England fans off their seat, momentarily at least. There's some movement on the bench as Lallana and Welbeck get prepared to enter the fray.
CHANCE! Sterling and Shaw combine well on the left flank and the Southampton youngster has a chance to cross for the first time tonight. He delivers a low ball, looking for Sturridge. Corner to England...
The crowd is flat and there really isn't much going on at the moment. Denmark will be perfectly happy for it to remain as it is. The 60,000 or so England fans desperately need something to get excited about.
A round of applause as Luke Shaw wins his first duel of the night. The 18-year-old has a made an assured start to his England career, yet to exert himself in an attacking sense though.
Much better from England as they begin to exert some authority over the visitors. Daniel Sturridge roams away from his position up front to orchestrate an attack but as of yet the Denmark defence is standing strong.
Electric start to the second half from the visitors. Gary Cahill has to be at his best to get a foot on a low, hard cross from the left from Denmark. Early warning signs as England fans slowly return to their seats.
England take the kick-off and we are underway in the second half.
News emerging at half-time seems to suggest Luke Shaw is ready to take to the pitch for his England debut in the second half.
A fairly low key first half at Wembley where neither side really took the game by the scruff of the neck. Sterling and Sturridge had the best chances for the hosts but a combination of poor finishing from the hosts and good goalkeeping from Kasper Schmeichel, sees both sides go in for the half-time break all square.
HALF-TIME: England 0-0 Denmark
GREAT SAVE! Cahill wins the header from the corner and the ball falls to Sturridge with only the keeper to beat, but Schmeichel makes himself big and makes a fine block to keep the scores level.
OFF THE POST! Raheem Sterling hits the post for the hosts after England's best move of the game. Sturridge and Rooney combine to release Cole on the overlap. The full-back crosses for Sterling but under pressure, the Liverpool man can only direct the ball onto the post from barely a yard or so out. Agonising for the Reds winger, credit to the Denmark defence.
Denmark earn a corner and attempt an intricate training ground routine. England just about get the job done in clearing the ball but it all looked a bit uncertain at the back there. Hogson strokes his chin on the touchline as he contemplates where the first 45 minutes have gone...
CHANCE! Best chance of the night for Denmark and it falls to Poulson. The Denmark midfielder takes one touch too many in the box though and allows Hart the time to come out and smother inside the box. The ball breaks loose but Ashley Cole is there first to clear.
Wayne Rooney collects a pass from Sturridge on the edge of the area and shapes up for a trademark right-footed curler from about 25 yards. High and wide and not causing Schmeichel any problems.
Less than ten minutes until half-time and some of these players have only that to impress Roy Hodgson. From the opening half hour, only Raheem Sterling can really come away from this first half with any sort of credit.
Denmark enjoy a rare period of possession in the England half but it's not long before the Three Lions regain the ball. Denmark's best hope looks to be on the counterattack. They are having absolutely no joy when England have men behind the ball.
CLOSE! A overhit cross is collected by Sturridge on the right-hand side and his shot flashes across the face of the goal with Wayne Rooney only just missing the ball at the back post, where he came running in. The first real chance for England. The fans given something to shout about.
Sterling is again involved in the action, this time he pops up on the left flank. His cross is blocked but England keep up the pressure via Jack Wilshere...
A Gerrard free kick from a deep position is swung in towards Sturridge but a Danish head gets to it first to clear the danger. The visitors then launch a direct counter and Cahill and Smalling just about sort out the danger with Bendtner charging in, ready to capitalise.
A quick stat while we wait for this match to spring into life. Roy Hodgson has guided England to victory in just 13 of the 24 matches he has been in charge. He's drawn eight and lost three, including the defeats to Germany and Chile in England's last two outings.
A bit of a lull in proceedings after that period of pressure from the visitors. Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson are trying to dictate the tempo of this match, while Sterling, in particular, looks likely to the player who forces the openings.
Good football from the visitors between Krohn-Delhi and Bendtner means Smalling has to be alert to the danger. To his credit, the Manchester United man is, and makes a fine challenge to keep the Danes at bay.
CHANCE! Gary Cahill chests and then rifles the ball at goal on the volley from a Gerrard corner, but the Chelsea defender gets a bit too much behind the shot and it fizzes wide of the post.
CHANCE! Rooney makes a good diagonal run and beats the outrushing Schmeichel to the ball but his cross-cum-shot is neither here or there and the Denmark defenders get back to make sure no one taps into an empty net. England well on top now.
The free kick is taken by Rooney, who tries to caress the ball over the wall and under the bar but he gets his effort all wrong and looks slightly embarassed as it sails out.
Yellow CardCasper Sloth
Hit and then miss from Daniel Sturridge. A sublime back-heel flick gets England going on the attack but the Liverpool man then lets himself down with a poor touch. Moments later, Steven Gerrard bursts throught the middle of the park and earns a free kick in a central area just outside box...
Denmark finally find their feet in the game as we pass the 15-minute mark. A cross towards Bendtner travels all the way through to Krohn-Delhi but the midfielders shot is snatched and blazed high and wide. A wake up call for England's defence.
Wilshere is up on his feet and hobbles to the touchline. Not sure if he can carry on or not just yet. Adam Lallana is readying himself just in case. The action resumes with England temporarily down to ten...
Heart in mouth moment for England and indeed Arsenal fans as Jack Wilshere stays down after a strong challenge from Daniel Agger. Worrying signs as he clutches his leg in pain. A great shame for the Gunners midfielder, it doesn't look particularly good on first impressions.
More danger from England on this right-hand side. This time Sterling tries to feed through a pass for Glen Johnson's run but has to settle for a corner. The resulting delivery is poor and Denmark clear their lines with minimal fuss.
A few moans and groans from the home crowd as Sterling goes down in an advanced position without getting a decision. The young Liverpool winger has been heavily involved inside the first ten minutes.
Denmark are sitting deep in their own half and are inviting pressure from the Three Lions. Raheem Sterling recieves the ball on the byline and puts in the first testing cross of the match. The onus seems to be on Gerrard, Wilshere and Henderson to find the gaps in the Danish wall.
England are enjoying a fine spell on the ball. A neat combination by Wilshere and Johnson nearly comes off on the right flank but Denmark are aware to the danger and deal with it well. Roy Hodgson's men dictating proceedings at the moment.
An early chance for Ashley Cole to get forward down the right-hand side, but the danger eventually comes from Sterling on the right. Good movement but a poor cross from the Liverpool man. A fine start from the hosts.
Denmark take the kick-off and we are underway at Wembley Stadium!
Just a quick note before we get underway, England's under-21 side have just beaten their Welsh counterparts 1-0. Norwich winger Nathan Redmond got the all important goal. Meanwhile, back here at Wembley both national anthems ring out...
Steven Gerrard is ready to lead the Three Lions out of the tunnel. The stage is set, just moments away from the kick-off now...
According to a number of journalists at Wembley Stadium tonight, Tom Cleverley's name was audibly booed by a sizeable portion of the home crowd as it was announced during the pre-match warm-up. Could be an intriguing, and potentially poisonous theme to proceedings.
Daniel Agger and Nicklas Bendtner represent the Premier League contingent in the Danish team. The likes of Lars Jacobsen, Christian Poulsen have experience of playing on this shores. While Simon Kjaer and Michael Krohn-Delhi are among those who starred at Euro 2012. Certainly a strong-looking Denmark team on show tonight.
And here's how the opposition will line up tonight. Denmark XI: Schmeichel; Sloth, Agger, Kjaer, Peter Ankersen; Kvist Jorgensen, Jacobsen, Poulsen, Krohn-Delhi, Larsen; Bendtner.
Elsewhere in Roy Hodgson's selection, Ashley Cole gets the nod over Luke Shaw at left-back. The Southampton youngster was widely tipped to make his England debut from the off tonight, but he will have to wait, as will his Saints team-mates, Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert and Jay Rodriguez.
No fewer than five Liverpool players in England's starting line-up tonight. Glen Johnson earns his 50th international cap as he looks to cement his place in the squad for Brazil. But all eyes will be on the trio of Jordan Henderson, Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge, who all start after a series of scintillating performances for high-flying Liverpool. They all join captain and England stalwart, Steven Gerrard in the side.
First thing's first, here is your England starting XI for tonight: Hart; Johnson, Cahill, Smalling, Cole; Henderson, Gerrard, Wilshere, Sterling; Rooney, Sturridge.
Good evening ladies and gents! Welcome to play-by-play commentary of England v Denmark from Wembley Stadium LIVE!
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