Wembley Win But England Will Test Our Nerves

 

Goals from Gary Cahill and Harry Kane secured a World Cup warm-up victory for England against Nigeria on Saturday as Gareth Southgate's side played their penultimate match before heading to Russia.

The Three Lions boss was pleased with the movement and inter-play of his front four players in the first 45 minutes as England created space and chances in a game played almost entirely in the visiting half.

Cahill's strong header from a corner showed that set-pieces will be of importance throughout the tournament, especially against opponents such as Panama who are likely to sit deep and concede free-kicks in dangerous areas.

England went into their last major tournament with Kane taking corner kicks but a similar scenario is unlikely to be repeated this summer!

A change of formation for Nigeria at the break saw them match England's system and brought immediate dividends with Alex Iwobi halving the deficit and signalling a wobble for England which they eventually overcame as the game petered out amidst the usual flurry of substitutions.

In a strange way Southgate will have been pleased to see his side tested more than they were in the opening 45 minutes but transfer Saturday's scenario to Russia and it is clear that England will test the nerves of their supporters even when coming out on top.

It's Costa Rica next up at Elland Road on Thursday evening.

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