Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain fails to impress as England book place at World Cup

5 October 2017

Jordan Henderson and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain started for England against Slovenia, as Harry Kane’s last-gasp winner sealed a place at the World Cup.

England 1-0 Slovenia

World Cup Qualifier, Wembley Stadium
October 5, 2017

Goal: Kane 90+4′

It was the penultimate game in England’s qualifying campaign, and manager Gareth Southgate knew victory on Thursday night would ensure a place in Russia next summer.

Henderson started alongside Tottenham‘s Eric Dier in the middle of the park, while Oxlade-Chamberlain was deployed on the right in a 4-2-3-1 formation. Daniel Sturridge didn’t feature at all, however.

The first half was relatively non-eventful, with the Reds pair not exactly setting the world alight, and the match was goalless at the interval.

England were improved in the second half, with Henderson producing one of his trademark Steven Gerrard-esque crosses that Kane almost scored from.

Oxlade-Chamberlain continued to be an erratic figure, though, and is clearly someone playing with very little confidence right now.

The 24-year-old was replaced with 63 minutes on the clock.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 26, 2017: England's manager Gareth Southgate during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying Group F match against Lithuania at Wembley Stadium. (Pic by Lexie Lin/Propaganda)

Man United‘s Marcus Rashford was thwarted by a goalline clearance, and former Liverpool man Raheem Sterling was denied by a last-ditch block by a Slovenia defender, as the hosts pressed for a winner.

The goal finally came deep into stoppage time, as Kane pounced from close range to send an impatient Wembley crowd wild.

Another summer of disappointment now awaits in Russia!

England’s last Group F game takes place on Sunday evening, with Southgate’s men visiting Lithuania.

Hopefully, the Liverpool contingent will be rested, ahead of next Saturday’s crucial Premier League clash with Man United at Anfield.

England: Hart; Walker, Stones, Cahill, Bertrand; Henderson, Dier; Oxlade-Chamberlain (Lingard 63′), Sterling (Keane 85′), Rashford; Kane

Subs not used: Smalling, Butland, Pickford, Trippier, Maguire, Cresswell, Livermore, Winks, Sturridge, Defoe

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