England 0 Montenegro 0

Wayne Rooney

Eng­land 0 Montenegro 0, Wemb­ley Sta­dium, UEFA Euro­pean Cham­pi­on­ship Quali­fier, Oct­ober 12, 2010. Zlatko Kranjcar´s Montenegro con­tin­ued their un­defeated start to their 2012 Euro­pean Cham­pi­on­ship Qual­i­fy­ing cam­paign when they held out for a goal­less draw in the Group G en­counter wi­th Eng­land at Wemb­ley. And even tho­ugh The Three Li­ons dom­in­ated and kept pos­ses­sion for long parts, too much of their passing came to nothing.

There was little to en­ter­tain the 73,000 crowd at Wemb­ley Sta­dium as the Montenegro te­am were even less im­press­ive than the Eng­land si­de. Fa­bio Capello´s troops should have taken the lead in the third min­ute of the tie when a Ste­ven Ger­rard pass al­most fou­nd Pe­ter Crouch who was in­ches away from put­ting the hosts ahead. The Montenegrins’s on­ly op­por­tun­ity in the open­ing pe­riod ar­rived when HNK Rijeka goal poach­er Radomir Dja­lovic shot wide in the 12th min­ute of the tussle. Then, af­ter 60 min­utes of play, Liver­pool mid­fielder Ste­ven Ger­rard played a thro­ugh ball in­to the path of Man­chester Uni­ted ace Way­ne Roo­ney who al­most sco­red wi­th a shot that Videoton and Videoton and Montenegro goal­keeper Mladen Bozovic did well to save. The Three Li­ons went on to dom­in­ate pro­ceed­ings and the ho­me te­am were denied a pen­alty by Ger­man of­fi­cial Manuel Grafe when Ser­bi­an born de­fender Mil­an Jovan­ovic at­temp­ted to clear Ash­ley Cole’s cross wi­th his left arm in the 78th min­ute of the con­test. As the clock ticked down, Eng­land en­joyed sev­er­al op­por­tun­it­ies to win the ga­me, but failed to con­vert and the Montenegro de­fence held firm to earn them­selves a draw.

The little fan­cied Montenegrin out­fit were con­tent to pull ten play­ers be­hind the ball for long spells dur­ing the quali­fier clash and The Brave Fal­cons were more than sat­is­fied wi­th a res­ult which left the Balkan na­tion three points ahead of Capello´s Eng­land at the top of the group. The Wemb­ley audi­ence was largely quiet on a dark North West Lon­don night which wit­nessed yet an­oth­er me­diocre per­form­ance from Roo­ney. Fight­ing wi­th his in­ner demons, the much troubled marks­man now had to find a way of get­ting out of his self in­flic­ted hell. For­tu­nately for him, Waz­za still had a cross tat­too on his up­per right arm and a Coleen tat­too on his left. Eng­land Te­am: Joe Hart, Rio Fer­dinand, Glen John­son, Gar­eth Bar­ry, Ash­ley Cole, Jo­leon Le­scott, Ash­ley Young, Ste­ven Ger­rard, Pe­ter Crouch, Ad­am John­son, Way­ne Roo­ney. Sub­stitutes: Jack Wil­shere, Stew­art Down­ing, Steph­en War­nock, Ga­ry Ca­hill, Shaun Wright-Phil­lips, Kev­in Dav­ies, Ben Fo­ster. Montenegro Te­am: Mladen Bozovic, Marko Basa, Mi­odrag Dzudovic, Mil­an Jovan­ovic, Stefan Savic, Elsad Zverot­ic, Mit­ar Novakovic, Si­mon Vuk­cevic, Branko Boskovic, Mi­lorad Pekovic, Radomir Dja­lovic. Sub­stitutes: Ra­doslav Batak, Luka Pe­jovic, Za­rko To­ma­sevic, Mladen Kas­celan, Fa­tos Be­ciraj, An­drija De­li­basic, Srdan Blazic.

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