Moldova 0 England 5: Roy Hodgson heaps praise on young stars
Moldova 0 England 5: Roy Hodgson heaps praise on youngsters Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Tom Cleverley after win
Roy Hodgson heaped praise on England’s young stars Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Tom Cleverley after an emphatic victory over Moldova in their opening World Cup qualifier.
Frank Lampard opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the fourth minute, with the Chelsea midfielder netting a second before Jermain Defoe handed the visitors a 3-0 lead at half-time.
Hodgson’s side continued to attack after the interval and James Milner finished from the edge of the area to consolidate England’s advantage before Leighton Baines’ deflected free-kick completed a 5-0 win.
“Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain had an excellent first half,” Hodgson told the BBC.
“He hasn’t played much football, and we were worried about keeping him on too long – he wasn’t as good in the first 10 to 15 minutes of the second half.
“Tom Cleverley was terrific through the 90 minutes. You can understand why Sir Alex Ferguson plays him so much.
“He came into a team alongside players such as Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard and didn’t look out of place.”
Hodgson was pleased with his side’s overall display, although the England manager did express his concern over John Terry’s fitness for Ukraine’s visit to Wembley on Tuesday after the centre-half picked up an injury in Moldova.
“In the first half, not only did we attack well but we defended well. We were quick to win the ball back when we didn’t have it,” Hodgson added.
“Certainly 3-0 was a very pleasing scoreline at half-time. Even in the second half, we played some good football and scored two more goals.
“My only concern is the injury to John Terry. I don’t think it’s a very serious injury, but Tuesday is very close. I will have to wait and see what the doctors tell me.”