Frank Lampard wrote the headlines with two goals in England’s 5-0 away win in Moldova but an injury to John Terry also makes the news.
Lampard scored the first two goals on a comfortable night for Roy Hodgson’s team – the first a penalty after a handball and the second a header from a Glen Johnson cross. England were 3-0 up at the interval with Jermain Defoe scoring and James Milner and Leighton Baines completed the job.
Lampard now has 25 international goals from 92 appearances.
Daniel Sturridge, Gary Cahill and Ryan Bertrand remained on the bench while John Terry completed the 90 minutes but played on having twisted an ankle with all three subs used.
‘I’d liked to have taken him off, and we did suggest we’d play with 10 men,’ said Hodgson after the game.
‘He’s a warrior though, so he poo-pooed the suggestion he should come off with 20 minutes to go. It’s obviously not a very serious injury, but every knock is important with only three days between games.’
England play Ukraine at Wembley on Tuesday.
Chelsea’s Belgian contingent got their qualifying campaign off to a winning start with a 2-0 win in Cardiff against Wales, who were reduced to 10 men just 25 minutes in when James Collins was dismissed.
Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois played the whole match, our on-loan keeper making a good save from Gareth Bale when the score was just 1-0. Romelu Lukaku came on at half-time and Kevin De Bruyne on 64 minutes.
Yossi Benayoun was a late sub in Israel’s 1-1 draw away in Azerbaijan.
In international friendlies, Spain cruised to a 5-0 home victory over Saudi Arabia. Fernando Torres started what was his 100th game for his country and was captain to mark the occasion although he didn’t score, shooting just over before he was replaced by the returning David Villa on 53 minutes.
David Luiz and Oscar played the whole of Brazil’s home match against South Africa with Ramires involved for all but the final quarter of an hour. It was a David Luiz shot that rebounded off the keeper for Hulk to score the only goal, but the 1-0 performance was not greeted well by the crowd in Sao Paulo.
At a younger level, Jeffrey Bruma was part of the Netherlands Under-21 side’s 4-1 win over Austria. It ensures the Dutch top spot in their qualification group and a place in the play-offs for the European Championship finals.
Czech Republic Under-21s achieved the same with a 0-0 draw in Montenegro with Tomas Kalas at the heart of their defence.