Published:29 March 2021
England kicked off their FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifying campaign with a 5-0 win over lowly San Marino at Wembley on Thursday.
The Three Lions fired 32 shots at the San Marino goal, highlighting the disparity in pedigree between the two sides on the night.
Gareth Southgate benched Harry Kane, Declan Rice, Harry Maguire, and Tyrone Mings, while Marcus Rashford and Bukayo Saka were injured and did not play. Nonetheless, the hosts put on a five-star show to impress their humble guests.
In the 14th minute, James Ward Prowse scored the game's first goal, putting away a brilliant Ben Chilwell cut-back with the sweetest of touches. England was three goals up in the blink of an eye, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Raheem Sterling hitting the back of the net.
The one-way traffic persisted in the second half, as San Marino struggled to adjust to England's pace, physicality, and precision. San Marino's night was made even worse by goals from Calvert-Lewin and substitute Ollie Watkins.
Gareth Southgate has been chastised for his cautious attitude at times. A much-changed England, on the other hand, feasted against weaker resistance against San Marino.
The former Middlesbrough manager has been blessed with highly talented players and has a deep enough squad to participate in international tournaments. On the night, it was clear that the hosts were no match for their outmatched rivals.
England will now fly to Albania in the hopes of extending their qualifying campaign with a victory.