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Last Updated: Saturday, 26 March, 2005, 17:28 GMT
England/N Ireland player ratings
Marks out of 10 for England and Northern Ireland after their World Cup qualifier at Old Trafford.


Paul Robinson - 6: Will never have an easier 90 minutes in an England shirt. Called on only once to make a simple save in the second half.

Gary Neville - 6: A quiet game on the right flank, he worked hard, sent in two inviting crosses in attack and was diligent in defence.

Ashley Cole - 6: Stangely subdued in an open game that seemed suited to his style of attacking play, but worked well with namesake, Joe.

John Terry - 7: Efficient in defence and energetic in attack. Target man in the box and joined in forward raids with enthusiasm.

Rio Ferdinand - 7: Cool and composed in defence. Did the basics with aplomb and shadowed lone striker David Healy throughout.

Steven Gerrard - 6: Failed to impose himself on the game as he does when wearing the red of Liverpool, but improved after the interval.

Frank Lampard - 8: Creative hub in midfield and England were at their best when he hit his stride. Deserved his goal but missed glorious later chance.

David Beckham - 6: Ever a danger over a deadball and showed a good range of passing, but the captain lacked the dynamic quality of old.

Joe Cole - 9 (STAR MAN): Lived up to the pre-match hype. Lively throughout, cut in off the left flank in search of the ball and began the rout.

Wayne Rooney - 8: In and out of game but, at his best, brilliant. Header hit post and stunning strike was saved before barnstorming run set up third goal.

Michael Owen - 7: Missed a good first-half chance but made amends when he stole in for poacher's goal after the break in typical style.


Owen Hargreaves - 5: (replaced Gerrard, 71 mins) Kept the midfield ticking over after coming on with the game won.

Kieron Dyer - 7: (replaced Beckham, 71 mins)
Added pace to right flank and set up Frank Lampard and Michael Owen only to see them blaze shots over.

Jermain Defoe - 5: (replaced Rooney, 79 mins)
A bystander in the final 10 minutes and struggled to find the pace of the game.

Northern Ireland

Maik Taylor - 6 (STAR MAN): Brilliantly denied Owen, Lampard and Rooney with some superb saves in the first half but could do little to stop the England barrage after the break.

Chris Baird - 4: Started well, closing down the likes of Joe Cole, but soon began to struggle and his disappointing afternoon was rounded off with an own goal off Wayne Rooney's pass.

Colin Murdock - 3: Heavy-handed tackling at times which worked in the opening half but not so effectively after the interval. Claimed the second own goal when his head deflected a shot in.

Aaron Hughes - 4: Struggled to deal with the England attack and unconstructive with long balls out.

Tony Capaldi - 5: Made a solid start and kept his cool early on but often outpaced by England's forwards. His error gifted England with their first goal of the afternoon.

Keith Gillespie - 5: Made little impact on the right but did better when he drifted into the centre. Failed to make the most of his big match experience.

Tommy Doherty - 4: Struggled to hold on to the ball and sent a speculative 25-yard effort over the crossbar in the opening half before being substituted on the hour mark.

Jeff Whitley - 5: Wasted possession at times and failed to pick out his team-mates with poor passing.

Stuart Elliott - 4: Played on the left of midfield instead of his normal strike role but made little impact.

Damien Johnson - 5: Looked positive when putting together passes in the few attempts going forward but England's defence were untroubled by his efforts and fizzled out late on.

David Healy - 5: Battled bravely up front but found himself isolated with little or no support from Northern Ireland's beleaguered midfield.


Steve Davis - 5: (replaced Doherty, 59 mins)
Could do little as his side were already down by three quickfire goals when he came on.

Steve Jones: (replaced Whitley, 88 mins)
Not on long enough to make an impact.

Andy Kirk: (replaced Healy, 88 mins)
Not on long enough to make an impact.

Interview: England head coach Sven-Goran Eriksson

Interview: England midfielder Joe Cole

Interview: Northern Ireland boss Lawrie Sanchez

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