FA Post Job Vacancy After Jol Quits Role

The FA have announced that Martin Jol has resigned from his position as England manager, having taken England to the World Cup quarter-finals this year. England were the only nation in Russia to win all three of their group matches, before they went on to beat Ghana in the last sixteen ahead of an extra-time defeat to Spain.

The 62-year old Dutchman has decided to hang up his keys to the dugout for good, and retire from the game. He was appointed as successor to Brendan Rodgers following his sacking after England’s dismal showing at Euro 2016.

Luis Enrique is already considered by many within the game as the most likely person for the vacancy, though there is likely to be strong interest from several candidates who will see the job as an ideal opportunity to enhance their reputations.

Spain Beat England in Extra-Time QF Clash

Jordi Alba’s goal in the first period of extra-time saw Spain beat England in Moscow tonight in the seventh tournament meeting between the two nations. Manchester United striker Rodrigo opened the scoring for Spain before his club team-mate Wayne Rooney levelled after the break.

It took until ten minutes before half-time for either side to make a breakthrough, and it came in favour of Spain when Rodrigo gave Smalling and Baines the slip to collect a lovely ball through the English defence by Fabregas, taking a touch then poking past Hart from close range.

Five minutes after the break, England levelled when a corner was worked back into the box by Wilshere. Wayne Rooney had time and the strength to bring the ball down, hold-off the challenge from Victor Ruiz, turn and drill low past Casillas from twelve yards out.

Both sides pushed for a winner in normal time, with Hart reacting well to push a Llorente shot on to the post, before Huddlestone had a 30-yarder tipped over the bar in one of the saves of the tournament so far.

The Russian referee was surrounded by Spanish players and urged to check VAR when Rooney and Ramos clashed inside the final five minutes, with the England forward giving Ramos a shove in the chest but nothing more came of it other than a stern dressing-down for both parties.

England thought they’d won it in the 88th minute from a corner. Milner sent the delivery to the back post for Henderson to nod back down across goal. Phil Jones got a faint touch on it and sent the ball goalwards but Thiago was on hand to clear away with the officials indicating that the whole of the ball hadn’t crossed the line.

Twelve minutes into extra-time came the winner. Fabregas found Jordi Alba on the left and the Barcelona man cut inside with the ball, left Wilshere for dead before putting Kyle Walker onto his wrong foot and slotting low past Hart. Spain will play the winners between Brazil and Colombia.

                        SPAIN 2-1 ENGLAND (aet)
                   Rodrigo 35     Rooney 59
                     Alba 102

                     Llorente     Rooney

World Cup Last 16: Ghana 1-3 England

England confidently booked their place in the quarter-finals at a World Cup for the first time since 2006 with a 3-1 win in Moscow over a Ghana side who saw their goalscorer sent-off with half-hour left to play. England will meet Spain in Friday’s quarter-final back here at the Luzhniki Stadium.

Both sides made two changes from their final group game. Ghana gave starts to Kevin-Prince Boateng and Waris Majeed up front ahead of Jordan Ayew and Isaac Cofie. England meanwhile restored Wayne Rooney and Jack Wilshere to the starting XI for Phil Jones (suspended) and Wilfried Zaha.

It took until midway through the first-half for either side to have a serious sniff at goal and that was enough for England to take the lead. Rooney drifted wide to the right and played it back to Kyle Walker who sent a ball into the near post where Theo Walcott collected before slotting underneath the ‘keeper at close range with 22 minutes played.

A second goal followed just after the half-hour mark when Wilshere’s in-swinging corner led to a scramble and Samuel Inkoom ended up as the unfortunate man when his attempted clearance only spun the ball into the back of his own net for the tournament’s second own goal.

Within four minutes a corner from the other side caught Ghana cold, with Rooney nodding Leighton Baines’s delivery across goal where Ryan Shawcross was waiting to head home England’s third.

Ghana made a change shortly before half-time as Uriah Asante limped off, then made two more changes during the interval. Seven minutes into the second-half they pulled a goal back through Nana Asare who was played through by Majeed as the English defence stepped-up for an offside that never came.

The goal seemed to fire up Asare as within ten minutes he clashed with Wilshere as both players went into a challenge. Wilshere was on the ground clutching his face and after a brief check with VAR, Nana Asare was shown a straight red card for his elbow on the Arsenal man.

Down a man, Ghana had nothing to offer and England were happy to play keep-ball safe in the knowledge of a place in the final eight. A trio of yellow cards came in a feisty five minutes in the final quarter, but nothing boiled over and England saw out the 3-1 win.

                        GHANA 1-3 ENGLAND
                     Asare 51     Walcott 22
                 Asare s/o 60     Inkoom og 32
                                  Shawcross 35

                      Boateng     Rooney

U21 Euro Semi-Finals: Italy and Ireland Through

Italy will meet host nation Ireland in the final of the UEFA U21 Euros on Sunday at Dalymount Park in Dublin after today’s semi-finals. Ireland beat England courtesy of Sligo Rovers striker Gavin French’s 9th minute goal, but across the city at the RDS Arena, the other tie between France and Italy had all the action.

Neal Maupay, scorer of five goals in the group stages, put France ahead inside three minutes and that came after a first minute yellow card for Italian captain and right-back Daniel Senesi® when he tried keep a handful of Maupay’s shirt.

Diego De Girolamo nodded in an equaliser for Italy midway through the first-half before a moment of madness five minutes before the break saw Senesi shown a second yellow when he kicked the ball away in frustration at having a goal disallowed for offside.

Despite the disadvantage in numbers, Italy went ahead shortly afterwards when Fabiano Scarabello® was left unmarked at a corner and he powered home a far post header after he slipped round the back to make it 2-1 at the break.

Italy pushed for a third to kill the game off but were twice thwarted by a combination of substitute ‘keeper Martial Torre® and the woodwork as the 18-year old twice tipped shots from distance on to the post and wide.

France caught the Italians on the break in the 73rd minute to tie the game at two-apiece, when Flavio Liberti® was caught in possession and the ball lumped long to Neal Maupay who held off the challenge of Claudio Davoli and slammed a shot into the top corner past Cédrric Gonzalez.

The game went to extra-time, and with ten minutes remaining Italy won it through prolific striker Emiliano Mancinelli of Borussia Dortmund, his 24th goal in 34 U21 caps. Matteo Cento, eventual man of the match, went on a surging run down the left, cut inside and floated a perfect cross in for Mancinelli to glance a header neatly past Torre.

Ireland and Italy haven’t met at U21 level since qualifiers for the 2013 tournament, with Italy winning 3-0 at home, and then 1-0 in Longford.

French striker Neal Maupay, who plays his football for Nice, looks to have sewn the golden boot up having scored seven times in France’s four games. Scarabello of Italy is next best on three, including his goal today.

World Cup: England Lose Man, Win Match

Group D: The Slovenian referee had a busy evening in Samara with nine yellows and one red issued as England beat Honduras to be the first side with three wins from three, while Russia scored the 100th goal of the tournament in their draw with Tunisia to see them safely into the second round. England will face Ghana on Sunday, and Russia will meet Italy.

Two enforced changes for England, as James Milner and Theo Walcott replaces Jack Wilshere and Wayne Rooney, both of whom were suspended from the win over Tunisia. Just the one change for Honduras with midfielder Mario Martínez in place of Luis Ramos who was sent-off against Russia.

England got off to a flyer in the first-ever meeting between the two sides as Chris Smalling headed home from Milner’s corner for his third goal for his country. A minute later Milner was the first player in the referee’s book with a crunching challenge on Johnny Palacios after he went in strong on Phil Jones.

The Three Lions pushed for a second but the Honduran defence held strong. The game was in danger of spilling over as the Central American side were flying into challenges as the win they needed to qualify started to look more an more unlikely. By half-time, referee Damir Skomir had given out five yellow cards, and two more quickly followed after the break.

With over half-hour to play Phil Jones, cautioned on the stroke of half-time, came through the back of Lozano and Skomir showed the sixth red card of the tournament.

England shut-up shop to preserve their 100% record, Honduras huffed and puffed but offered little going forwards. The win sets up a last sixteen match for England against Ghana which will be played in Moscow on Sunday.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP D (3)
                      ENGLAND 1-0 HONDURAS
                  Smalling 11
               Jones s/off 59

                       Milner     Palacios
                        Jones     Espinoza
                  Huddlestone     Chávez

The hosts made two changes from last time out: in came Evgeny Makeev and Alexandr Kokorin for Georgy Schennikov and Konstantin Rausch. Goal difference was on their side, but couldn’t afford a slip-up against Tunisia who made just one change: Wahbi Khazri replacing Rebaï Chellouf®.

An opening half hour passed-by without much to trouble the commentators or excite the crowd, but with England already one-up in their match, Welliton scored his third of the tournament, and the 100th here in Russia this month when he drilled the hosts in front from 15 yards.

Tunisia threatened to spoil the party when they levelled midway through the second-half through Hamza Younes. Bedoui stayed onside to cross from the right towards Younes, but Zelao headed away. Chehoudi was first to react and he hit the loose ball back across the six-yard box where Younes had stayed for a perfect poacher’s finish.

That’s how it finished in Volgograd and Russia will now meet Euro 2016 champions Italy in the second round. They met in August last year in a 1-1 friendly draw, while Italy knocked Russia out of Euro 2016 two years ago with a 3-0 win in the last sixteen.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP D (3)
                       RUSSIA 1-1 TUNISIA
                  Welliton 27     Younes 68
                       Makeev     Chermiti

World Cup, Group D: Matchday Two Review

England are on the verge of a place in the last sixteen after coming from behind to beat Tunisia at the Anji Arena, with hosts Russia knowing a win next week should suffice to also progress after Honduras crumbled after taking the lead against them before going down to ten men.

After defeat in their opening game by England, Russia made three changes for their match against Tunisia in Moscow: Schennikov for Makeev in defence, Kontsedalov instead of the injured Glushakov in midfield, and Rausch up to replacing Kokorin.

Honduras meanwhile made two changes from the side that beat Tunisia last week: Romel Fuentes took David Diego’s spot in goal, and Luis Ramos came in to the back four for the injured Milton Gutíerrez.

A win for Honduras against the hosts would have seen them seal a spot in the Second Round, and they got off to a perfect start in the 7th minute when Anthony Lozano slammed home a low cross from Andy Najar after he chased a long-ball over the top. In control, it all went from on the 20 minute mark.

Ramos and Konstantin Rausch tangled 30 yards from the Honduran goal as the two players both went in with a strong block tackle, but as the ball ran free in Rausch’s favour, Luis Ramos dived in with a two-footed scissor challenge and was shown a straight red by the French referee.

That ended Honduras’s control of midfield, and after the game threatened to boil over with Dzagoev and García being booked, Russia found a deserved equaliser six minutes before the break through Pavel Mamaev when he controlled Parshivlyuk’s cross brilliantly before toe-poking past Fuentes.

Two more goals came midway through the second-half when Welliton turned home Kombarov’s low ball into the box, before Makeev pulled the ball back from the right to Dmitry Kombarov on the edge of the box who drilled a shot into the bottom corner.

Russia’s destiny isn’t in their own hands for their final group game against Tunisia, but should they avoid defeat and Honduras don’t beat England then they’ll progress.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP D (2)
                       RUSSIA 3-1 HONDURAS
                    Mamaev 39     Lozano 8
                  Welliton 65     Ramos s/o 20
                  Kombarov 72
                      Dzagoev     García

England had to come from behind in Makhachkala tonight to beat a stubborn Tunisia side and take a big step to the last sixteen, though will be without Wayne Rooney and Jack Wilshere for their final group game after both players picked up their second bookings of the tournament.

Two changes for England, with Ryan Shawcross coming in for Marc Linighan® which pushed Phil Jones into midfield, and Wilfried Zaha taking the place of Theo Walcott up front alongside captain Rooney. Tunisia made a pair of changes from the side who lost to Honduras: Zouhaeir Dhaouadi and Rebaï Wassim Chellouf® came in to the staring XI in place of Wahbi Khazri and Chaker Zouaghi.

Youssef Msakni stunned England inside ten minutes when he drove towards the England box, slipped the ball past the challenge of Phil Jones then slid a shot off the wet turf past the diving Joe Hart for his tenth international goal on his 60th cap.

The lead only lasted three minutes until Leighton Baines whipped in a free-kick from the right-hand side of the box after Abdennor’s foul on Rooney which looked suspiciously inside the area. Baines delivered to the far post where Stoke centre-back Ryan Shawcross powered home a header for the equaliser.

Rooney was booked on 27 minutes when he came through the back of Ben Messaoud, and after being cautioned in the win over Russia, he’ll miss the final group game against Honduras on Wednesday.

England took the lead on the half-hour when Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross towards Zaha was only cleared as far as Jones by Benalouane. Jones nodded the ball back into the box to Wilfried Zaha twelve yards out who swivelled and slotted home for 2-1.

The Three Lions dominated after the break and when Wayne Rooney converted Oxlade-Chamberlain’s ball in towards the six-yard box, the game was won.

There was to be one sour note right at the end of the game when Jack Wilshere was shown a yellow card in the final minute after a tangle with Khaled Korbi, when replays show the Tunisia man – already booked himself – went down under no contact whatsoever. Unfortunately, with no look at VAR, the booking rules Wilshere out of the Honduras clash.

As long as England avoid a three-goal defeat on Wednesday, they’ll meet a team from Group C in the Second Round. Tunisia will meet Russia hoping for results to go their way in order to sneak in to the top two.

                  FIFA WORLD CUP: GROUP D (2)
                      TUNISIA 1-3 ENGLAND
                    Msakni 10     Shawcross 13
                                  Zaha 31
                                  Rooney 73
                        Korbi     Rooney