Rashford fires England to victory against Slovakia and closer to World Cup qualification

September 5, 2017
| Report Focus News

England came from behind to beat Slovakia 2-1 at home, to stay top of their Group F qualifying group and are now just two points away from automatic qualification for the 2018 World Cup, thanks to vital goals from Eric Dier and Marcus Rashford.

Slovakia opened the scoring on the 3rd minute when England conceded their first goal in a home qualifying fixture since November 2016 when Jordan Henderson scored an own goal against Slovenia.

Rashford lost the ball and Adam Nemec capitalised on it, chipping a through ball over the top to release Stanislav Lobotka, who finished it smoothly.

It wasn’t until the 37th minute that England equalised when Rashford took a fine corner, crossing to the near post, and Dier met it, volleying it past Martin Dubravka.

On the 59th minute, Rashrod grabbed the lead when he smashed the ball into the bottom left hand corner from the edge of the box, redeeming himself for his earlier mistake by scoring his first goal at Wembley.

After Slovakia’s early goal, they defended their lead well, pressing England who gradually got into the game.

On the 14th minute, Harry Kane held the ball up well, turned but saw his shot from the edge of the box blocked, winning a corner that led to a scramble in the box and a clearance.

And It was Kane who won the corner that led to Dier’s goal, with his effort blocked.

After 42 minutes, Ryan Bertrand smashed a shot but it was straight at Dubravka and two minutes later from far out, Rashfrod curled a low shot towards the near post that troubled Dubravka, who dived down quickly for the save.

On the 55th minute, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s volley was saved after some good link up play but two minutes later Slovakia showed England their own skillful link up play with a few one-twos taking them down the wing from their own half, with Marek Hamsik’s pass reaching Róbert Mark, whose cross was cut out by Gary Cahill.

But then Hamsik’s cross found Nemec who smashed a shot straight at Joe Hart.

Kane fired a low ball across the face of the goal after 55 minutes, which knocked off Dubravka’s outstretched hand, and bounced off Dele Alli’s leg, going wide.

After bouncing back from his mistake for the first goal, Rashford redeemed himself with an assist and a stunning winning goal on the 59th minute and was awarded man of the match.

When he was substituted off for Danny Welbeck on the 83rd minute, he received a standing ovation.

England remain top of Group F with 20 point and Slovakia second with 15 points.

The teams return to action for more qualifying matches on November 5 when England host Slovenia in a match that if they win, will guarantee their place in the 2018 World Cup and Slovakia travel to Scotland, who, sitting in fourth place with 14 points after their 2-0 win over Malta, will likely mean a fight for second spot and qualifying for the World Cup.