World Football - England player ratings: Great Scott

Sat, 12 Nov 20:34:00 2011

Player ratings from England's 1-0 win over Spain at Wembley, with Scott Parker and Joleon Lescott drawing the plaudits.

FOOTBALL Scott Parker in action for England against Spain at Wembley on November 12 - 0


GK: Joe Hart (7)

The records will show that the Manchester City keeper was the man between the sticks for England, but in truth he could not have expected to have had so little to do. Made an important reaction stop from Cesc Fabregas's deflected shot as the clock ticked down.

RB: Glen Johnson (6)

Did not offer an emphatic answer to those questioning his selection over that of Micah Richards, but played his part, although he made a poor defensive header that allowed David Villa a chance from which he hit the post.

CB: Phil Jagielka (8) 

Recovered sufficiently from a fractured toe to play, and showed plenty of the same grit on the pitch. With several key blocks and tackles, the Everton man's 'John Terry' impression was convincing. 

CB: Joleon Lescott (9)

A real reminder of why Manchester City paid an eight-figure sum for him a little more than two years ago. If Jagielka was playing Terry, then Lescott was the de facto Rio, his reading of the game allowing him to make several vital interceptions and play the ball out from the back. Losing possession in a dangerous area late on was the one blot on his copybook.

LB: Ashley Cole (8)

Usually England's most reliable player, in the early exchanges Cole was the most flustered component of the back four. Gathered himself and became his usual assured presence. Intercepting a chipped pass bound for his Chelsea team-mate Fernando Torres must have been most satisfying.

RM: Theo Walcott (7)

Caused a stir in Spain in an Arsenal shirt when his pace wrought havoc in the Barcelona defence last season. Was unable to come close to replicating that showing here, but put in a shift and tracked back to help limit the threat of Jordi Alba. Subbed at half-time. 

CM: Phil Jones (7)

Passed the ultimate examination - on paper at least - of his credentials as a midfield destroyer. Often comes in for criticism over his positioning, but he was for the most part in the right place at the right time. Subbed off on 56 minutes.

CM: Scott Parker (9)

David Silva may well be the best player in England at the moment, but Parker is the reigning Player of the Year according to his peers and he proved just why against the world champions. A true mark of quality is to play the same way no matter the opposition, and Parker did that with a characteristically gutsy and busy display screening the defence. His slide in to divert Fabregas's cross prevented a near-certain goal for Gerard Pique

ACM: Frank Lampard (7)

The England captain for the day has now been on the winning side against Spain on two occasions - but a decade apart. Exhibited the traits which have come to define his career as an opportunistic goal-scoring midfielder with a speculative shot from range that was right at Iker Casillas, before pouncing to head home from a yard out after Darren Bent's effort had rebounded off the post. Subbed off on 56 minutes. 

LM: James Milner (8)

Added a great deal of balance to the England midfield with Walcott's pace on the other flank. Deserves more plaudits for his performances at Manchester City this season - he has claimed five assists so far this campaign, only two fewer than team-mate David Silva - but he made almost every touch count against Spain. His reverse pass through for Jack Rodwell was a touch of class in an otherwise industrious England performance. Booked. Subbed off on 76 minutes.

FW: Darren Bent (7)

The Aston Villa striker lives and dies by the service he receives, and with his team-mates preoccupied with holding the Spaniards at bay he often cut an isolated figure. If Spain needed a reminder that he was actually playing, they got it when he rose to head against the post, allowing Lampard to score the rebound. Subbed off on 64 minutes.


46' Stewart Downing (6) - Has impressed on a few of his recent international outings, but this was not the day to dazzle on the wings.

56' Jack Rodwell (7) - Hesitant in his first action, a poor cross from the left, but otherwise a good debut which featured some great link-up with Danny Welbeck which almost saw him one-on-one with the keeper.

56' Gareth Barry (6) - Was given the most underwhelming of welcomes from the home crowd. Mostly went about his business well, although a clumsy foul on David Villa gave the Spain striker a free-kick in a good area.

64' Danny Welbeck (6) - Smart one-two with Rodwell aside, the Manchester United striker was unconvincing as a lone target man while his team-mates fought back the inevitable late fight back.

77' Adam Johnson (6) - Not given much time to impress, but did so when he intercepted Fabregas's pass and galloped down the field, only to find he was lacking in support.

85' Kyle Walker (6) - Helped England over the line as he picked up a deserved first senior cap. Bust a gut to keep up with Johnson's break but didn't get the cross he needed. 


GK: Iker Casillas (6)

The Spain captain's record 126th cap for his country - equalling fellow legendary custodian Andoni Zubizarreta - must have been one of his quietest international appearances, with only Lampard's strike from range to keep him on his toes. Subbed off at half-time.

RB: Alvaro Arbeloa (6)

Untroubled by the pace of Milner, the Real Madrid defender was regularly the furthest Spain player up the pitch as the visitors dominated the early proceedings. But he could not convert that territory into any attacking options.

CB: Gerard Pique (7) 

For the most part it was as classy a display as you expect from the Barcelona defender. Only Parker's interception denied him a fifth international goal.

CB: Sergio Ramos (6)

Like Pique, brought the ball out from the back plenty of times, but defensively left wanting. Got away with cynically blocking Walcott, but was eventually booked for a lunging foul on Bent. Subbed off on 74 minutes.

LB: Jordi Alba (6) 

Did not hit the heights of his debut against Scotland on his second international appearance, but a good showing nonetheless. Pressed high when not required to keep tabs on Walcott, and showed the defensive qualities the converted winger has had to adopt in order to get into the Valencia team. His desperately-extended boot in second half saw the ball rebound off Pepe Reina and almost give England a second goal.

CM: Sergio Busquets (6)

Played his customary role as the pantomime villain, and as usual that obscured a quietly efficient performance, in which he helped squeeze the England midfield. Subbed off on 64 minutes.

CM: Xavi Hernandez (7)

Pulled the strings in the Spain midfield as much as ever, though the little maestro was unable to conduct the type of masterclass which saw him named in Marca's all-time best XI earlier this week. Subbed off on 45 minutes.

CM: Xabi Alonso (6)

A rare disappointment from Real Madrid's long-distance distributor. England's organisation made it difficult for Alonso to spray his trademark 50-yarders around the Wembley turf, while his set-piece deliveries were oddly off-key too. Almost put Busquets through on one occasion, but that was it.

FW: Andres Iniesta (6) 

Threatened to break through the centre on a couple of occasions as Silva and Villa tried to part the England centre-backs, but could not do so. One of Spain's biggest disappointments on the night, even when given a more influential role after Xavi was taken off. Subbed off on 74 minutes. 

FW: David Villa (7)

As mixed an evening for Spain's record goal-scorer as his season has been for Barcelona. The number seven had some sublime touches in the first half, but was largely unsuccessful in his attempts to link up with Alba down the left. After the break he was much improved, hitting the side-netting and the post before setting up Fabregas for a chance his Barca team-mate should have scored.

FW: David Silva (6)

All and sundry have been waxing lyrical about the Manchester City playmaker in recent weeks, and with good reason: he has set up seven Premier League goals this season, averaging three chances created per game. However, he was not permitted to have such influence on proceedings here, though he was unfortunate to be flagged offside when it appeared he was played on by team-mate Lescott. Subbed off on 45 minutes. 


45' Pepe Reina (6) - The Liverpool number one and Spain number three's first touch was to pick ball out of net, though there was little he could have done about it.

45' Juan Mata (6) - The Chelsea midfielder is another who has been earning rave reviews in the Premier League this season, but was unable to have an impact upon the national team of the country where he now plies his trade.

45' Cesc Fabregas (5) - New haircut, new attitude. The long-locked midfielder was booked within minutes of coming on for clattering into Jagielka in mid-air. A rare off-colour showing from the former Arsenal captain on his return to London, spurning several chances that came his way including a bad late miss.

64' Fernando Torres (6) - Inexplicably booed mercilessly by the home fans, more than Fabregas or even Busquets. Nevertheless, the Chelsea striker worked hard for his team-mates, and set up one of the chances which Fabregas missed.

74' Carles Puyol (6) - Had little to do in the final quarter of an hour as his team laid siege to the England goal except occasionally beating Welbeck in the air.

74' Santi Cazorla (6) - The Malaga playmaker was unable to have any influence as manager Vicente del Bosque's final attacking throw of the dice.

Tony Mabert - on Twitter @tony_mabert / Eurosport

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