Euro 2016: England 1-2 Iceland - Player Ratings
England managed to bottle their chances yet again in an international football tournament as they lost 1-2 to a spirited Iceland side in the rouond-of-16 of the UEFA Euro 2016. Wayne Rooney opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the 4th minute before Ragnar Sigurdsson equalised for Iceland and then Kolbeinn Sigthorsson’s goal in the 18th minute sent their fans into delirium.
England failed to break down a resolute defence after that and succumbed to one of the most humiliating defeats in their football history. Roy Hodgson, who resigned from his post after the loss, made six changes from the last match’s starting XI. As has been the case recently, Hodgson’s selections did not work out and quite evidently the coach was not able to find his strongest XI over the course of the tournament.
In a match where Iceland’s players played their hearts out, there were a lot of underperformers in the English team. It’ll be fair to say that the Three Lions have now become the epitome of underachievement in major tournaments.
Now let us take a look at how each player fared in the match.
Joe Hart – 4.5/10
The Manchester City goalkeeper was guilty of letting Sigthorsson’s shot roll away into the goal even after getting a decent part of his hand to the ball. He was lucky that a late shot from close range was hit straight at him, a metre left or right and it would have been 3-1 to Iceland.
Kyle Walker – 4.5/10
The Tottenham player was hailed as England’s best performer at the Euros, even though all he did was make sprints and send rather ineffective crosses into the box. Today was no different as Walker struggled on the ball and after making a couple of lethal runs in the initial stages, failed to do anything of substance. The right-back lost his man, Sigurdsson and left the Icelander clear on goal for the equaliser.
Gary Cahill – 4.5/10
The centre-back was far from his best as he failed miserably to close down Iceland attackers when they charged on the English goal. One such incident led to the second goal for the underdogs which ultimately proved out to be the winner.
Chris Smalling – 5/10
Smalling was not involved much in the game as majority of the match was played in the opposition half. Though he did not make many mistakes, he did not even produce something of substance out of the blue which helped his team in one way or the other.
Danny Rose – 5/10
The Tottenham full-back was full of running but was not able to send something for his strikers to feed on in the box.
Dele Alli – 5.5/10
Alli showed flashes of brilliance but was largely ineffective. He struck a volley from long range in the first half which just missed the bar but other than that, he was pretty mediocre.
Eric Dier – 5/10
Dier looked composed on the ball even though his team went a goal down. However, he was taken off for Wilshere, a more potent attacking option, after half-time.
Wayne Rooney – 5.5/10
Not a captain’s performance by any stretch of the imagination from Rooney. His penalty was inch perfect and even though the goalkeeper jumped the right way, he was unable to save it. However, after that, other than sending some decent long passes, he was not able to do much and was taken off for Rashford in the 86th minute.
Daniel Sturridge – 6.5/10
The Liverpool striker was played out wide on the right flank by Uncle Roy. His presence of mind to fall back a bit and try cutting the ball on his strong left foot paid dividends initially, as his aerial ball found Sterling, who was then fouled upon and England won the penalty. He was probably the best English player on the pitch.
Harry Kane – 4.5/10
Kane’s performance in the first half was promising and it seemed as though he has found his rhythm. He was making the right movements and was good position-wise. However, his second half performance was a complete contrast from the first. His set-piece deliveries were well below par, he often failed to collect the passes properly and was not good in front of the goal as well.
Raheem Sterling – 5/10
In what was a frustrating night for the English players, Sterling perhaps gave the biggest of contributions as he won the penalty for the opening goal, but that was it. He was then taken off for Vardy in the 60th minute.
Jack Wilshere – 5.5/10
Wilshere was brought on for Dier to improve the quality of deliveries the English forwards were getting. He played some half-decent lofted balls and at least it looked like he was trying. However, he was guilty of losing the ball on a couple of occasions.
Jamie Vardy – 5/10
The Leicester striker was brought on in place of Raheem Sterling to find an equaliser from somewhere. But all he provided was some pace which accounted for nothing in the end.
Marcus Rashford – N/A
The United youngster was brought on for the last five minutes by Hodgson.