Written by Leon Imber, sub-edited by Emilia Hawkins.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s scintillating form sees him earn his first England cap, whilst Bukayo Saka also makes his debut. Meanwhile, Wales aim to make it five wins on-the-bounce, and having not lost a match since June 2019, they will feel confident in doing so.
It is certainly a night of experimentation for Gareth Southgate, Leon Imber will take you through the action as it happens.
A moment of silence is held before the match to remember those affiliated with English football that are no longer with us.
KICK OFF – Both sets of players take the knee before the game gets underway.
2′ – It’s certainly a back three for England. Dominic Calvert-Lewin showing some nice early touches.
4′ – First corner of the game goes to Wales as Kieffer Moore gets in behind. He’s impressed for Neil Harris’ Cardiff City since signing in the summer.
6′ – Danny Ings wins England’s first corner. Come on DCL, get your head on it….. cleared.
9′ – Wayward passing all over, debutant Saka looking nervous, understandably.Embed from Getty Images
12′ – We’re all rooting for him, and he nearly gets his first. Calvert-Lewin played through the Welsh defence and he rounds Wayne Hennessy, the angle proves too acute. Better, England.
17′ – No rhythm to this game. England being subdued to possession in their own half and not a whole lot more, the lack of experience in the England side is evident.
20′ – Warning for Southgate’s men. Moore sends a scuffed volley wide, he’s getting in-between this England defence.
23′ – Just about the only man on the pitch taller than Moore, Nick Pope, claims a cross that looked destined for the head of the Welshman. Massive aerial threat for England, the guy’s huge!
25′ GOAL – DOMINIC CALVERT-LEWIN
YES DCL! You love to see it. Fantastic work by Jack Grealish, drifting to the right side to whip in a delectable met by the flying striker. A goal on his debut, the man is on fire.
29′ – Moore causes another scare, in behind the England defence (how many times am I going to say that this evening) Pope reacts well and pinches the ball from the strikers feet.
34′ – Long break in play lets us watch the goal back, great movement by DCL. Morrell is back to his feet and the game can continue.
36′ – Saka wins a corner, the young man is growing into the game which is great to see. The delivery causes a mess in the box which leads to a close range volley by Conor Coady, skied it, wouldn’t expect much different.
38′ – Bitter, bitter blow for Wales. Moore forced off the pitch with what looks like an ankle injury. He’s been the main threat for Ryan Giggs’ side so far this evening.
42′ – Ouch, it’s supposed to be a friendly. Nasty challenge on Saka made by Connor Roberts. I can’t be the only one thinking it could’ve been more than just a yellow card?
45′ – Two minutes to be added on. England certainly look more comfortable now, Moore’s departure leaves Wales lacking a focal point in attack.
45+2′ – Half time. England go in 1-0 to the good.
While we wait for the second half to get underway, lets look at what happened in the last meeting between these two sides in a major competition.
45′ Second half begins
England get the game back underway, whilst Northampton Town football club provide us with a great piece of trivia.
48;’ – Tyler Roberts wiggles part way through the England back line before unleashing a tame shot, not troubling Pope in goal. We’ll take those all day long.
53′ GOAL CONOR COADY
WHAT A BALL. The 9th man to wear the armband under Southgate’s tenure, Kieran Trippier dinks a delightful ball and Coady volleys home. The lead is doubled, Wales’ winning run in jeopardy.
57′ – Calvert-Lewin, Trippier and Joe Gomez make way for Reece James, Tyrone Mings and Mason Mount. Calvert-Lewin and Trippier in particular can have their heads held high tonight, a goal and an assist respectively. Coady takes the armband, what an evening for him.
62′ GOAL – DANNY INGS
Tyrone Mings wins the header and Ings is there with an absolute peach of an overhead kick. Excellent stuff from Southgate’s men who are beginning to run riot. Do Ings and Calvert-Lewin keep Harry Kane out of the side I wonder?
66′ – Grealish is loving it. Pulling the strings like a puppeteer. Good on him. England holding possession comfortably in the Wales half now, looks a completely different match to the one being played in the first 20 minutes.
69′ – What a save! Wayne Hennessey keeps out Saka from a deflected strike. A goal for the young man would’ve capped off a great evening for England. Team selection headaches are definitely to be had by Southgate.
72′ – Matthew Smith and Chris Gunter on for Wales. How many caps must that be now for Gunter? Respect.Embed from Getty Images
75′ – An array of subs for England. Harvey Barnes, Ainsley Maitland-Niles and James Ward-Prowse on. Grealish is one that makes way. He’s been really, really good.
80′ – The game is slowly winding down. Defence holding firm with Coady marshalling. His attempts on goal seem quite like waiting for a bus to come. You wait for an age and then two come at once.
83′ – Another big save by Hennessey to deny Ings. Chances are few and far between at this point, England have dealt the damage already.
87′ – Chris Mepham finally gets to his feet, both teams looking to wind down the time now. England ready to party, complying to COVID guidelines of course (take note Tammy Abraham and co!)
90′ – Two minutes to be added on again. Giggs’ side will taste defeat for the first time in over a year.
90+2′ – Full Time, England 3-0 Wales. A good night for the Three Lions.Embed from Getty Images