BBC Sport football

IN ASSOCIATION WITH

Related BBC sites

Live - International football



World Cup qualifying results:
Netherlands 3-0 Scotland
Northern Ireland 3-2 Poland
Wales 0-2 Finland

International friendly result:
England 4-0 Slovakia

GOALFLASHES AND MAJOR INCIDENTS (all times GMT)

606: DEBATE

To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111 . (Not all contributions can be used)

By Paul Fletcher

2155: Well that is just about it from me but there will be more international action on Wednesday.

To mark your card, England play Ukraine, Scotland face Iceland, Northern Ireland play Slovenia and Wales take on Germany.

Thanks for all your comments and contributions today. You've been a lovely audience.

And if you haven't had enough sport for one day don't forget that there will be comprehensive coverage of the first grand prix of the season from Australia on the website in a few hours time.
Button on pole for stunning Brawn

2147: The top rated player at full-time in the Netherlands v Scotland match is Robin van Persie with a very respectable 8.14. Disagree with his mark? Well you can do something about it by getting involved on the Player Rater.
Rate the players

2145: Just to make it clear - Scotland play Iceland, not Ireland as I crazily suggested, on Wednesday. Fatigue, what a terrible thing.

2143: France did defeat Lithuania and Italy overcame Montenegro, while Spain against Turkey is currently goalless.

2138: Disappointment for the Republic of Ireland as the full-time whistle sounds. It all seemed to be going so well before Kevin Kilbane's own goal.

2137: Full-time Netherlands 3-0 Scotland
You would have to say that Scotland were very much second best, but then again how many people really thought they would take something from this fixture? They must put this result behind them and focus on Wednesday's crucial home match against Iceland.

2136: Kevin Doyle should snatch victory for the Republic of Ireland with a free header from six yards but he picks out the keeper. Very disappointing.

2133: The last time Scotland played in Amsterdam they lost 6-0. A relative improvement tonight but that won't come as much consolation.

2132: It might be all over bar the shouting in Amsterdam, but there is all to play in Dublin, with the Republic of Ireland looking for a winner against Bulgaria.

2130: The final change for Scotland with five minutes left, as James Morrison comes on for Gary Teale.

2129: Italy are beating Montenegro 2-0 and France have scored a crucial goal against Lithuania through Franck Ribery.

2127: Dirk Kuyt has another shooting chance but his effort is blocked by Christophe Berra.

2127: "What on earth has Kevin Davies got to do for an England call up?! He is one of the most in-form English strikers."
Matt via text on 81111

Darren Bent has got the nod, which will not please Bolton fans.

2124: Huntelaar and De Jong are subbed, with Ibrahim Afellay and Stijn Schaars coming on. It has been a good night for the Dutch, less than 10 minutes left.

2121: GOAL Netherlands 3-0 Scotland
The Dutch are awarded a penalty after Christophe Berra brings down Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. No complaints from the Scots and Dirk Kuyt sends the keeper the wrong way to extend his team's lead.

2120: Penalty to the Netherlands

2119: Disaster for the Republic as Bulgaria equalise when Radostin Kishishev swings in a dangerous ball to the back post for Stilian Petrov, whose sidefooted centre is unluckily poked into his own net by Kevin Kilbane .

2118: Scotland have the ball in the net thanks to a brilliant and powerful header from Gary Caldwell but the referee immediately rules it out, presumably for a foul on the keeper by Gary Teale. Harsh.

2117: Another substitution for Scotland as Graham Alexander makes way for Alan Hutton. It has not been an easy night for the veteran defender, who was up against Arjen Robben.

2114: A change for Scotland as Steven Fletcher comes on for Kenny Miller, who has worked tirelessly on his own for 71 minutes.

2112: It really should be 3-0 in Amsterdam. The ball drops to a completely unmarked Arjen Robben at the far stick but he slightly scuffs his shot and it strikes a Scotland defender. All of the edge has disappeared out of this match.

2110: The Republic of Ireland are pushing for a second. Stephen Hunt's cross is not dealt with by the Bulgaria keeper and the ball falls to Aiden McGeady. His strike is too close to the keeper, who saves.

2109: The Dutch make a change, with Wesley Sneijder replacing Robin van Persie. That sort of strength in depth shows what Scotland are up against.

2107: "I think both sets of fans would settle for this scoreline judging by the dying atmosphere, with a few choruses of Flower of Scotland sounding more like a lament. Dutch followers will be happy with the three points - the Tartan Army are hoping to avoid a more bruising defeat."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

2106: Some selection news - with Carlton Cole injured and questions marks over the fitness of Peter Crouch and Emile Heskey, England have called Darren Bent into the England squad.

2103: Robbie Keane goes close for the Republic of Ireland but his close-range effort is saved.

Arjen Robben shoots from distance for the Dutch but he is also denied, in this case by Allan McGregor.

2102: Ross McCormack bursts forward, past the half-way line, but finds himself surrounded by orange shirts and with very little support. It all looks quite comfortable for the Dutch at the moment.

2058: An opening at last for Scotland, with Scott Brown bursting forward. The ball just won't drop for him 18 yards from goal and it is scrambled clear for a corner.

2056: Dirk Kuyt shoots on the turn for the Dutch. His shot takes a slight deflection and narrowly misses the Scotland goal.

2055: Play, by the way, has resumed in the Republic of Ireland, with the home still leading Bulgaria 1-0.

2053: When the Dutch are firing they really are great to watch, such smooth passing and movement, grace and economy of effort. They open up Scotland but Giovanni van Bronckhorst's shot is blocked.

2051: Klaas-Jan Huntelaar goes down after Caldwell accidentally catches him with an elbow. The Dutch striker has treatment and is able to continue.

2049: Play resumes at the Amsterdam ArenA, with Scotland facing a very tricky 45 minutes indeed.

2048: "I think the 2010 World Cup could be without France and/or Portugal for that matter.

"Portugal have a do or die match with Sweden and they also have Denmark in their group also."
coolinterstar on 606
Join the debate on 606

2046: "The Scottish players looked shell-shocked as they went off at half-time. They find themselves two goals down thanks to marking that would embarrass Sunday football teams."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

2044: Not a good 45 minutes for Scotland and that's reflected in the half-time scores in Player Rater. Graham Alexander, Gary Teale and Kenny Miller come off worst with marks below 4.0.
Rate the players

2041: Not exactly a great night so far for France, who are being held 0-0 by Lithuania at half-time. At the start of the day France were fourth in qualifying Group Seven.

2040: "If we can have a repeat performance of the football and work ethic we can get three more points."
Northern Ireland boss Nigel Worthington looks to build on the win over Poland when they meet Slovenia

2037: "Now if only Van Persie could score for Arsenal like that more often, then it'd all be peaches and cream."
FlawlessVictory on 606
Join the debate on 606

2034: "At times, the Dutch are leaving just two at the back, with the full-backs making it a four-man midfield while wide players Robben and Kuyt join Huntelaar and Van Persie in attack."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

2033: Half-time Netherlands 2-0 Scotland

2032: GOAL Netherlands 2-0 Scotland
A corner comes in and Robin van Persie climbs higher than anyone else to head home from six yards. He wasn't really challenged at all - and what an awful time to concede as it comes on the stroke of half-time.

2031: Scotland win a free-kick in a wide area - their first decent attacking chance for some time but the subsequent ball into the box does not beat the first man and is cleared.

2030: "I am very proud of that, but the most important thing was the way we played and the performance we put in."
David Beckham on winning his 109th cap - the most by an England out-field player

2026: Another dangerous ball across the face of the Scotland goal. Since scoring the Dutch have really found their form, with all the superb passing and movement we have come to expect from them.

2024: Bulgaria are capable of playing some decent stuff and the Republic's Kevin Kilbane is caught short at the back post as he allows Stanislav Angelov room to pick out Dimitar Rangelov and he should have done better than sweep a right-foot shot over the bar.

2023: A free-kick in a wide area for the Dutch but for once the delivery is poor and Scotland clear their lines.

2021: Scotland have hardly seen anything of the ball in the last 10 minutes. George Burley is off the bench encouraging his troops.

2019: Shaky times for Scotland. Robin van Persie crosses from the left and the visitors are short of numbers in their own box but manage to scramble the ball clear.

2016: GOAL Netherlands 1-0 Scotland
The home team take the lead through Klaas-Jan Huntelaar who superbly heads home a cross from Mark van Bommel six yards from goal.

2014: Cracking skill from Arjen Robben, who picks the ball up on the left and bursts into the Scotland penalty area, reaching the byeline, but his low drilled cross is brilliantly blocked by Allan McGregor.

2013: Mark van Bommel and Darren Fletcher compete for the same ball, with the Scotland midfielder undoubtedly coming off worse. No real drama, as he is able to continue.

2010: A comfortable evening for Germany, as they are now beating Liechtenstein 4-0.

2009: Hearts in mouths time for the Republic as Zhivko Milanov goes tumbling in the box under a challenge from Keith Andrews. Croatian referee Ivan Bebek books Milanov for diving, which seems a tad harsh as replays show he lost his footing before taking a clattering from Andrews.

2008: Arjen Robben goes down 25 yards from goal after a challenge from Scott Brown. The home fans are incensed that they have not been awarded a free-kick - and replays suggest they have a point.

2006: "The Dutch fans have gone quiet, rather in keeping with the subdued start by the hosts on the lush Amsterdam ArenA turf. They were certainly holding their breath when Kenny Miller was put through on goal."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

2003: The Dutch suddenly show what they are capable of with a blistering break that catches Scotland short but Arjen Robben's disappointing shot flies well over.

2001: Scotland win a corner after Nigel de Jong makes a covering clearance at the far post. Scotland have definitely had their fair share of this game so far.

2000: Not exactly dynamic attacking so far from the Dutch. Dirk Kuyt shoots from 20 yards but his effort is blocked.

1957: A cracking opening for Scotland. Kenny Miller springs the offside trap, collecting a ball over the top and bursting into the Dutch box but before he even manages to shoot at goal he is tackled by Joris Mathijsen. A great challenge but Miller should at least have managed to get a shot off.

1955: No clear-cut chances to discuss so far, which is probably pleasing for George Burley. Scotland look fairly composed in possession but Kenny Miller is clearly in for a busy evening ploughing a lone furrow up front.

1953: "A couple of times Kenny Miller has found himself in a bit of space. I have been surprised by how high the Dutch are defending."
BBC Radio 5 Live summariser Pat Nevin

1950: Five minutes gone in Amsterdam and no real alarms so far for Scotland, who are playing in white while the Dutch are, of course, in orange.

1950: "My colleagues here in the press box - Scots I hasten to add - are predicting three or four nil for the Dutch. I hope George Burley's brave decision to go with a more offensive line-up does not backfire."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

1947: News of a very early goal for the Republic of Ireland , who have scored inside a minute through Richard Dunne. The defender has just headed home his first international goal from a free-kick.

1946: The match starts in Amsterdam. No question, a massive 90 minutes for George Burley's Scotland.

1943: "People always go on about the passion of the Tartan Army. But seeing the Amsterdam ArenA brimming with orange-beddecked Dutch waving flags in military precision to some Euro dance beat makes me realise Scotland obviously aren't the only ones who can send shivers up the spine with the level of their support."
BBC Scotland's Clive Lindsay at the Amsterdam ArenA

1942: Tremendous, tremendous noise from the Scotland fans as they blast out their anthem. I just hope their team don't let them down.

1939: Sounds like a fantastic atmosphere inside the Amsterdam Arena. Plenty of singing, dancing etc.

1936: Netherlands v Scotland teams
Netherlands: Stekelenburg, Van Der Wiel, Mathijsen, Ooijer, Van Bronckhorst, Kuyt, Van Bommel, De Jong, Robben, Huntelaar, Van Persie. Subs: Timmer, Boulahrouz, Braafheid, Van der Vaart, Sneijder, Afellay, Schaars.

Scotland: McGregor, Alexander, Berra, Caldwell, Naysmith, Brown, Darren Fletcher, Ferguson, McCormack, Teale, Miller. Subs: Gordon, Barr, Hutton, Steven Fletcher, Iwelumo, Morrison, Rae.

Referee: Laurent Duhamel (France)

1934: "I wouldn't write the Scots off just yet. You only have to look at Real Madrid to see that when the Dutch play together it doesn't always work."
Wazza v2 on 606
Join the debate on 606

1932: "I'd like to say, as a Welshman, I like to see the neighbours do well. Congratulations to England and NI for fine performances and I hope the Scots can pull it off, too."
Anonymous via text on 81111

1929: Some news on the Republic of Ireland , who take on Bulgaria. Aiden McGeady is fit to play, while Stephen Hunt replaces the injured Damien Duff.

Sunderland defender Paul McShane is preferred to Stephen Kelly at right-back.

1925: Scotland v Netherlands team news
Ross McCormack and Gary Teale are both surprise inclusions in the Scotland team.

Wide man Cardiff striker McCormack makes his first start and has the task of supporting lone striker Kenny Miller.

Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk has the luxury of leaving out Real Madrid duo Wesley Sneijder and Rafael van der Vaart.

Bernabeau team-mate Klaas Jan Huntelaar will lead the line with support from Arsenal's Robin van Persie, Liverpool's Dirk Kuyt and Arjen Robben, also of Real Madrid.

1920: Attention now turns to Amsterdam, where Scotland play the Dutch. A massive task for George Burley's side.

1916: "I'm a Villa fan but Rooney has been quality. Most have contributed well for England today - especially considering it was a friendly."
beamsley on 606
Join the debate on 606

1914: A class display from Northern Ireland, who have registered their first win over Poland since 1991. NI are now top of Group Three, though Slovakia, who were poor against England, do have two games in hand.

1912: "Wayne Rooney claims the man of the match award and rightly so. It is just a pity Capello and England's overall satisfaction may be over-shadowed by those three attacking injuries.

"England's fans are more than satisfied as they look forward to a return visit for the World Cup qualifier against the Ukraine on Wednesday - and what impact will David Beckham's impressive cameo have on Capello's thought processes ahead of that one?"
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1909: Full-time: England 4-0 Slovakia

1908: Full-time Northern Ireland 3-2 Poland

1907: GOAL England 4-0 Slovakia
Frank Lampard has the ball on the left and passes it to Wayne Rooney , who slots it home with a deft finish from eight yards. Just about the last action of the game.

1905: GOAL Northern Ireland 3-2 Poland
A brilliant diving header from Southampton's Marek Saganowski in the first minute of injury time. Saints fan in the office jumps up and down.

1905: "I'm devastated by how Poland plays today. But I can't see any reason to say Northern Ireland is playing well. They are just not as poor as Poland. They have been given three great gifts, especially by the first and third goals. Today even San Marino would have won against Poland and NI has to improve their game if they want to beat Slovenia, as what they show today is not enough for that. The worst qualification game I've seen in years."
sobmar on 606
Join the debate on 606

Not having fun, no?

1902: (See 1844) "We don't know why Downing is in the Boro team, let alone England."
Anonymous via text on 81111

1900: Warren Feeney goes off to a rapturous reception at Windsor Park and he is replaced by Chris Baird as the home side look to see out the last six minutes.

1858: GOAL England 3-0 Slovakia
Frank Lampard latches onto a pass and makes a trademark late run into the box. His angled finish is low and across the keeper, nestling into the bottom corner, though I wouldn't describe it as the cleanest contact of all time.

1857: "In among the tedious Mexican waving and the general party atmosphere around Wembley after Rooney's second goal, some real worries are piling up for England coach Fabio Capello as Peter Crouch makes it a treble of injured strikers.

"England will hope the injuries do not prove too serious, but Bolton's Kevin Davies might just be contemplating a call up if the medical bulletins turn out to be pessimistic."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1853: Poland almost pull a goal back as Roger stands up a cross that Southampton's Marek Saganowski gets up well to meet with a decent downward header, but it is just the wrong side of the post for the visitors.

1850: David Healy hits the target with a header but Celtic's Artur Boruc saves.

Michael Carrick comes on for Peter Crouch, the second sub to be subbed in the match. Wayne Rooney is still on. Crouch felt a defender's studs in the hip region (not easy with Crouch), leading to his departure.

1849: Mexican wave doing the rounds at Wembley. Wayne Rooney should have been awarded a free-kick after being brought down on the edge of the box.

1847: Almost a fourth for Northern Ireland as Gareth McAuley heads just over the bar. Really impressive stuff from Nigel Worthington's team.

1846: GOAL England 2-0 Slovakia
Excellent cross from the impressive David Beckham and Wayne Rooney heads home from just outside the six-yard box.

1844: "Sorry, why on earth is Stewart Downing in the team? He is awful for England and I have never seen him put a decent cross in for the national team."
Alex, Essex, via text on 81111

He is definitely not having the greatest time out there. And he is one of those players who could really do with putting in a performance.

1842: Decent effort by David Healy, who shows a neat turn but shoots over with a team-mate crying out for the ball. Still, NI are closing in on a massive victory.

1841: It is all happening. Slovakia keeper Stefan Senecky blocks at the feet of Wayne Rooney. Cracking tackle by anyone's standards. Then John Terry shoots narrowly wide.

1838: Peter Crouch looks set to score with a header from David Beckham's free-kick but John Terry stabs the ball home from close range. Crouch would have scored but England do not because Terry was offside when he touched the ball. Terry apologises to Crouch.

1835: GOAL Northern Ireland 3-1 Poland
Absolute comedy goal, unless you are Poland keeper Artur Boruc. Michal Zewlakow knocks a backpass from 30 yards along the ground towards his keeper. Boruc tries to belt the ball up-field but it bobbles over his foot and into the net. Oops.

1833: "Why isn't Robert Green playing? Fabio goes on about picking players because of their performances for the club and players that play week in and week out. Rob Green has not missed a game for the Hammers in the league this year. Capello seems to be doing a lot of talking but never actually sticks to his word because Emile Heskey plays all the time and so does Foster?"
west-ham4europe on 606
Join the debate on 606

You're not the first to ask this question - and with good reason. I think Green can consider himself unlucky.

1830: Wayne Rooney slips Stewart Downing in down the left but the Boro winger's cross is awful. His second poor delivery of the half.

1830: Chris Brunt picks up a yellow card - his second of the campaign and misses Wednesday's qualifier against Slovenia at Windsor Park.

1829: Just seen a shot of Steven Gerrard, showered and changed already. Don't mess about these lads.

1827: David Beckham has had plenty of early touches and picks out Stewart Downing with a deep cross but the Boro winger's header is easily collected by the keeper.

Wayne Rooney shoots wide from distance.

1825: "The half-time player rater news will come as quite a shock to some - with Martin Skrtel's performance drawing plenty of comment at the interval, and not in a good way. With all due respect to our player raters I would have given him a 5.0, and only because I am feeling in generous mood.

"Predictable changes by Capello at half-time with one eye on Wednesday, and presumably having seen enough of the impressive Steven Gerrard to hand him a similar role against Ukraine."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1823: Oh, and play has resumed at Wembley. Three changes at the break, with Ben Foster, Stewart Downing and David Beckham on for David James, Aaron Lennon and Steven Gerrard. Beckham makes his 109th appearance - the highest number by an outfield player for England. History has been made.

1821: GOAL Northern Ireland 2-1 Poland
Jonny Evans restores Northern Ireland's lead with a finish from inside the six-yard box after Grant McCann's corner drops invitingly at his feet.

1820: Play resumes at Windsor Park as Northern Ireland go in search of a winner against Poland.

1818: "I think Fabio will have a word with Lampard, during the break, after he hit a few crosses right over the head of deep mid wicket." torontored on 606
Join the debate on 606

Oh yes, a very droll England kit as cricket outfit gag.

1813: Now then, England's game might only be a friendly but Northern Ireland's is a crucial World Cup qualifier - and we have another crucial match coming up later as well, with Scotland taking on the Netherlands in Amsterdam.

1810: An up-and-down half for Nigel Worthington's Northern Ireland side. If you've been following events at Windsor Park feel free to pop over and rate some players.
Rate the players

1809: "It shows how good Wayne Rooney is playing - he has even got Steven Gerrard to put in a half decent performance for England and that's a near miracle in itself.

"Rooney has been unbelievably good."
Hissing Sid on 606
Join the debate on 606

Check you out. Light the blue touch paper and stand back.

1807: Steven Gerrard is England's top man after 45 minutes of action with a Player Rater rating of 8.06, but he has to play second fiddle to his Liverpool team-mate Martin Skrtel, who can be rightly proud of his half-time total of 8.45.
Rate the players

1803: Half-time Northern Ireland 1-1 Poland
All square at Windsor Park. Poland have been poor and can consider themselves fortunate to be level as they only really had one chance. NI boss Nigel Worthington can take a lot of positives from his side's opening 45 minutes.

1801: Half-time England 1-0 Slovakia
A deserved lead for the home side playing in their brilliant white new strip, though Slovakia hardly look like the most terrifying opponents they will ever face. And injuries for Heskey and Cole take the gloss off the opening 45 minutes.

Wayne Rooney shoots over just before the break.

"For all England's obvious superiority, Slovakia have still forced two fine saves out David James - a decent return for a side who have shown us little and a concern for Capello. Sloppy moments at the back have gone unpunished so far, thanks to England's goalkeeper."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1759: England almost double their advantage but Steven Gerrard's 18-yard strike is saved - and held - by Stefan Senecky.

1758: Confusion in the England defence as Matthew Upson allows a pass from Ashley Cole to run across him. Slovakia striker Robert Vittek intercepts and goes on to force a decent finger-tip save from David James.

1757: Warren Feeney and David Healy both miss the target as Northern Ireland try to take the lead for a second time. The home side have had the better of the play.

1754: Almost a goal for England. First of all the Slovakia keeper parries a shot from Aaron Lennon and then saves the subsequent header from Steven Gerrard.

1752: "England coach Capello marches furiously from his seat to the technical area as his side fall asleep at a Slovakia corner - a situation rescued by David James as he saves well from Miroslav Karhan. Not a happy Fabio at all.

"Huge applause for David Beckham as he comes out for a brisk trot down the touchline."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1750: Another change at Wembley, as Carlton Cole, on as a substitute for the injured Emile Heskey, goes off. Cole himself picks up an injury and limps off - it looks like a possible groin injury. Peter Crouch comes on and I reckon Wayne Rooney might have to play the full 90 minutes.

1747: Play starts again at Windsor Park after a stoppage of several minutes.

1747: David James into the action, the England keeper making a decent stop to deny Miroslav Karhan from 20 yards.

1745: Frank Lampard shoots at goal, but not all that powerfully. Stefen Senecky does make a save but should hold the ball instead of parrying it back into the danger area. Thankfully for him Slovakia manage to clear.

1744: A linesman at Windsor Park is hit by an object and requires treatment.

1741: GOAL Northern Ireland 1-1 Poland
Northern Ireland try to play offside following a long ball up-fieldbut Ireneusz Jelen collects and the flag stays down. Jelen closes in on goal before shooting beyond Maik Taylor, who gets a hand on the ball but cannot stop it.

1740: An error from Slovakia's Martin Skrtel, who is caught in two minds, almost gifts Wayne Rooney a clean run at goal but the keeper is quickly off his line and clears.

1739: "Heskey's 14-minute cameo was action-packed - but it will be a concern for England coach Fabio Capello that he has had to remove him from the action so early with that crucial qualifier against Ukraine on Wednesday. For all his failings, Capello clearly feels England's system works better with him than without him.

"Wembley's sympathetic applause on his departure show how he has won over his detractors, unlike Ashley Cole, who still got some jeers when his name was read out. Surely time to let that one go now."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1736: Slovakia have shown nothing so far but should perhaps be level after an inviting cross from the right drops to Stanislav Sestak, but he makes a poor contact and his volley loops over the bar.

1732: England make an early change as Emile Heskey, presumably injured though he does not seem to be moving too badly, is replaced by Carlton Cole. It has been a decent start by England.

1731: "Fabio Capello is stone-faced - but his decision to give Steven Gerrard a left-flank role with licence to roam pays a swift dividend with Heskey's goal. Not the most elegant of finishes from the big man but England will take it - and reward for a bright start.

"The cheers around Wembley for Heskey's goal are quickly followed by gasps of disbelief as he heads over an open goal. Heskey encapsulated in the space of minutes."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1729: That was Emile Heskey's first goal for his country at Wembley and comes nearly six years after his last in an England shirt. Talk about London buses, he nearly scores a second within minutes as Wayne Rooney picks him out with a cross from the left and the Villa striker nods over from close range.

1725: GOAL Northern Ireland 1-0 Poland
David Healy goes close with an effort that is blocked by the keeper but there is no denying Warren Feeney shortly afterwards. He scores for Northern Ireland from Damien Johnson's head back in the 10th minute. It is Feeney's fourth international goal. A great start for Nigel Worthington's side but not a great effort from Artur Boruc in the Poland goal.

1724: GOAL England 1-0 Slovakia
Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard link up very well and the latter picks out Emile Heskey with a low cross. The Aston Villa striker makes no mistake from four yards.

1723: England win a corner that Frank Lampard knocks out to Steven Gerrard 20 or so yards from goal. Lampard puts a bit too much on it and the opening is wasted, new kit or not.

1722: "I like the new kit, there isn't anything to it so it's hard to see why someone wouldn't like it.

"It's white, has red numbers and the England three lions... That's it. How can you dislike that?"
peter_lpool on 606
Join the debate on 606

Fashion....so subjective.

1718: Warren Feeney has an early chance for Northern Ireland after a defensive error but his shot across goal is narrowly wide.

Not to be outshone, Wayne Rooney has a shot for England but it is blocked.

1717: An early opening for England as Aaron Lennon drills in a good low cross but Emile Heskey is beaten to the ball at the near post.

1716: We are under way at both Wembley and Windsor Park.

1714: Birmingham City midfielder Damien Johnson led the Northern Ireland team out to mark his 50th international cap.

1714: England take their tracksuit top off between the anthems. The new strip does look like a polo shirt. Minimal.

1710: Bright sunshine in Belfast, pouring down in London.

We are going through the anthems.

1709: Apparently the tracksuit tops are described as 'anthem jackets'.

1708: Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. England are wearing white. All white, totally plain white. As though they are going to hot foot it from Wembley to Wimbledon for a spot of post-match tennis.

To reiterate, totally white. Their training does not even have a crest on it. Nothing.

Correction, David James has totally black shorts and socks. It is certainly minimal, old skool, call it what you want.

1707: If Wales boss John Toshack thinks the Group Four table looks ugly, just wait until he checks out his side's Player Rater marks. It's far from pretty for his boys after that 2-0 loss, with Wayne Hennessey (6.39) the best of a bad bunch.
Rate the players

1705: Northern Ireland team in full

Northern Ireland: Taylor, McAuley, Craigan, Hughes, Evans, Johnson, Clingan, McCann, Brunt, Healy, Feeney. Subs: Mannus, McGivern, Baird, McGinn, Shiels, Ward, Little.

Poland: Boruc, Wasilewski, Dudka, Zewlakow, Wawrzyniak, Mariusz Lewandowski, Roger, Krzynowek, Bandrowski, Robert Lewandowski, Jelen. Subs: Zaluska, Bosacki, Wojtkowiak, Boguski, Saganowski, Blaszczykowski, Tralka.

Referee: Martin Hansson (Sweden)

1701: England team in full

England: James, Johnson, Upson, Terry, Ashley Cole, Lennon, Lampard, Barry, Gerrard, Heskey, Rooney. Subs: Green, Jagielka, Lescott, Baines, Carrick, Beckham, Downing, Carlton Cole, Crouch, Foster.

Slovakia: Senecky, Pekarik, Valachovic, Skrtel, Cech, Sestak, Zabavnik, Karhan, Kozak, Hamsik, Vittek. Subs: Mucha, Cisovsky, Kratochvil, Dobrotka, Sapara, Strba, Obzera, Mintal, Holosko, Jendrisek, Jakubko, Kamenar.

Referee: Alain Hamer (Luxembourg)

1659: "Even if England qualify for the World Cup they have no chance of winning it. Quarter final furthest they are capable of."
Barack Obamartins on 606
Join the debate on 606

I think we are getting a little ahead of ourselves.

1657: "A downpour has given way to sunshine at Wembley - and plenty of talking points already in Fabio Capello's England team selection. Big chance for Aaron Lennon on the right flank, but no start for Manchester United's Ben Foster in goal, with David James getting the nod as confirmation of his seemingly unchallenged status as first choice.

"An opportunity missed to test the undercard for England's goalkeeping position?

"Steven Gerrard is wearing number 11 so it must be presumed he will be on the left with licence to roam. Prepare for the usual post-match debate on that one."
BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at Wembley

1655: "If none of these guys want to play for Wales, there are plenty of us out here who do. Disgusting."
Richard, London, via text on 81111

1650: Full-time Wales 0-2 Finland
A few boos at the final whistle. The last action of the match was a save from Wayne Hennessey. Finland move above them in the table as Wales's World Cup dream takes a heavy pounding. Germany up next for John Toshack's team.

1648: GOAL Wales 0-2 Finland
World Cup dream over? Shefki Kuqi is played in down the left, cuts into the box and superbly finishes from a tight angle.

1648: Northern Ireland team news
With Kyle Lafferty out, Warren Feeney partners David Healy in the Northern Ireland attack in their Group Three clash with Poland.

There has been some trouble in Belfast bars ahead of the match. Fireworks, bricks and bottles were thrown as police moved in to separate Northern Irish and Polish football fans.

Northern Ireland: Taylor, McAuley, Hughes, Craigan, Evans, Johnson, Clingan, McCann, Brunt, Healy, Feeney.

1645: Shefki Kuqi comes on for Forssell. Not getting any easier for Wales.

"Shefki Kuqi came around to my house for Christmas dinner two years ago."
BBC Radio 5 Live summariser Robbie Savage

1644: "Most insipid performance by Wales for years. They haven't a clue out there. Depressed."
Chris, London, via text on 81111

The ball comes in from the left and heads towards Mikael Forssell, who is in loads of space on the edge of the Wales box. Alas, he falls over just as the ball arrives. Quite remarkable and definitely comic.

1642: "When Aaron Lennon has played for England he has been outstanding. He has pace, technical ability and the ability to go past defenders at ease. He is quicker than Walcott, scores more and provides more assists per game. The future is Lennon."
footballandethics on 606
Join the debate on 606

Lots to consider. What I would say is that today Lennon is the present.

1640: Tick, tock, time running out for Wales and I have to say that Finland have been comfortably the better side in the second half.

1638: England team news
David Beckham will have to wait for cap number 109 as he is named on the England bench as Fabio Capello hands a starting place to Aaron Lennon, while David James was named ahead of Ben Foster in goal and Emile Heskey partners Wayne Rooney up front. Steven Gerrard will start on the left of midfield, though have a roving role.

England: James, Johnson, Cole, Barry, Upson, Terry, Lennon, Lampard, Heskey, Rooney, Gerrard.

1636: There are 12 minutes of normal time left for Wales to do something. Like score once and then again.

1635: "We've got two short fast forwards up front and we're putting the ball in the air for them to win headers. Bright idea boys!"
Anonymous via text on 81111

1633: Finland should be leading 2-0 but Wayne Hennessey makes a great double save from Mikeal Forssell. Even so, had the striker made a clean contact it would have been curtains.

1631: Wales give the ball away again and are nearly made to pay but James Collins makes a crucial block with his chest.

1629: Another save from Wayne Hennessey, this time thwarting Aleksei Eremenko.

1627: Yep, Earnshaw on for Joe Ledley.

"I think that this change should have been made earlier. Finland look more energetic and confident at the moment."
BBC Radio 5 Live summariser Robbie Savage

1626: I wouldn't say that the introduction of Aaron Ramsey has had much impact so far. Robert Earnshaw looks set to join the fray soon.

1624: Lots of talk on 606 about the new England shirt. Traditional, some might say, others reckon it looks like a polo shirt. And it does. I guess we'll have to see what it looks like on the players (I'm pretty sure the players will be wearing it today).
Join the debate on 606

1622: Finland on the attack again, Wales scrambling the ball clear. Wales go up the other end but Craig Bellamy has come deep during the move and there is nobody in the box when it really matters.

1621: One Carl for another, as Robinson comes on for Fletcher. Doesn't seem to be that aggressive a substitution.

1619: Chris Gunter goes down and there is a huge appeal for a penalty but a free-kick is awarded just outside the Finnish penalty area. At least one pull of his shirt appeared to take place inside the box - but not the initial challenge.

Gareth Bale pulls the ball back to Jason Koumas, whose strike is blocked.

1618: Early England team news
Rio Ferdinand is not risked after suffering a slight recurrence of a back complaint, so Matthew Upson starts in defence.

David Beckham is on the bench, with Aaron Lennon starting.

1616: Wales are trying to step up the tempo and show a sense of urgency but Finland look pretty solid at the moment.

1613: John Toshack has to change something and duly does, with Aaron Ramsey on for David Edwards.

1612: Almost another goal for Finland. Joe Ledley heads off the line to deny Hannu Tihinen.

1611: It is all Finland at the moment. The Finns are breaking on the Welsh and Wayne Hennessey makes a decent save to deny Mikeal Forssell.

1609: A quick word on Gareth Bale's tackle on Mikeal Forsell at the end of the first half. Initially it looked like a brilliant goal-saving challenge. I've now seen a replay and I'm not so sure anymore...

1607: Drama up the other end. The defence are at sixes and sevens - are they playing offside or not? - and Mikael Forssell is through but his 18-yard strike across goal is just wide.

1606: Craig Bellamy wins the ball back and surges forward. He picks out Jason Koumas down the left and the Wigan player shoots from a tight angle but his effort is saved.

1604: Come on Wales, what have you got to lose? Show some urgency and intent or you can forget all about another qualifying campaign.

1603: Finland on the attack but Roman Eremenko's shot is blocked and the ball eventually cleared.

Russia have beaten Azerbaijan 2-0.

1603: Wales assistant boss Dean Saunders is also the manager of Wrexham. Currently both his teams are losing. He is with the national team.

1602: The match resumes at the Millennium Stadium. An absolutely crucial 45 minutes for Wales.

1601: "People never change, whether its England, Wales, Scotland etc the home nation teams were "always the better team". It makes me laugh that so many people were like Wales were all over Finland, yes they had good chances as did Finland. Just admit the home nations are not as good as we all think we are."
GunnamanWragg on 606
Join the debate on 606

1559: "I predict a Gomez hat-trick against Liechtenstein, a Lukas Podolski goal, a Schweinsteiger trademark 25 yarder and a Ballack free kick or penalty. Liechtenstein will still win it."
Thanks A lot BBC7 on 606
Join the debate on 606

Germany, of course, are in the same group as Wales. So are Liechtenstein for that matter.

1555: Wales boss John Toshack will no doubt be livid with his defenders for that goal. Whether you want to vent your own fury or put a numerical arm around the shoulder, why not head over to Player Rater and have your say:
Rate the players

1550: "Ouch. That goal is a kick in the teeth, and virtually Finland's first real effort.

"If Wales weren't motivated to go for it before, they will be now. Pile on the pressure and I'm sure they can win this game still, there are more goals in this."
Ryushinku on 606
Join the debate on 606

1547: Half-time Wales 0-1 Finland
The Wales team have it all to do now after an awful end to a half that they had the best of until the final few minutes.

1544: Brilliant, brilliant tackle from Gareth Bale. Mikeal Forssell collects a cross from the left and is clean through, surely certain to score, before Bale's brilliant challenge.

1542: GOAL Wales 0-1 Finland
Jonatan Johansson slips the ball past the onrushing Wayne Hennessey to put Finland in front after breaking down the left and cutting in on goal. Disappointing on several levels. Poor defending created the opening for Johansson, with Gareth Bale caught out trying to play offside. Hennessey was slow off his line and James Collins failed to clear it off the line as he tracked back.

1541: BTW, Russia are now 2-0 up against Azerbaijan.

1540: A jinking run across the front of the Finland back four by Jason Koumas, whose eventual shot is blocked.

Seconds later Koumas is in the box and the situation looks promising but his square ball is cut out.

1538: Finland are unlikely to be accused on being overly cavalier on their showing so far. A goal for Wales is probably what this game needs to open up the game a little bit.

1535: A free-kick comes in from Jari Litmanen and Sami Hyypia heads goalwards, but his effort lacks power and Wayne Hennessey comfortably saves.

1533: Shocking dive from Mikael Forssell. Never a penalty and I have no time for that sort of behaviour.

1532: Decent surging run from Craig Bellamy but Sami Hyypia shepherds him wide. Don't want to jinx anyone but I can only see one team scoring at the moment.

1530: Decent ball in from Craig Bellamy, just above Simon Davies, who rather naughtily tries to guide it towards goal with his hand.

1529: "I'm going to miss the England match. We're going out for a birthday dinner to celebrate my 21st. Best of luck to England though."
Skrtel doesn't need boots on 606
Join the debate on 606

Fair enough. If was turning 21 today I wouldn't bother watching an England friendly either. I like to think there would be a bigger set of priorities.

1527: "If I was on the pitch at the moment I would be screaming to Craig Bellamy to stay up field."
BBC Radio 5 Live summariser Robbie Savage

1524: Wales win another corner, which Finland manage to clear. Nonetheless Wales are definitely on top at the moment.

1521: Joe Ledley shapes to shoot but Petri Pasanen blocks. Gareth Bale breaks down the left, his effort is also blocked and Wales win a corner. The ball is cleared but swung back in by Carl Robinson and a header from James Collins forces a save from Jussi Jaaskelainen.

1519: "Most of the game has been played in the middle third so far."
BBC Radio 5 Live summariser Robbie Savage

Neither team has found that decisive killer ball to open up the opposition.

1517: Plenty of appeals for a penalty after a cut-back from Craig Bellamy strikes a Finland player but it appeared to hit him in the stomach rather than the arm.

Moments earlier Wayne Hennessey was called into action for the first time, cutting out a cross from the right.

1515: Some wonderful footwork from Jason Koumas in midfield to create space but his threaded pass to David Edwards has just has too much pace on it and is collected by Jussi Jaaskelainen.

1512: I have been impressed with Wales so far, who have settled into this match nicely and look comfortable in possession. They just need to start to create some openings.

1511: "Scotland will win 3-0 this evening!"
clarkfg on 606
Join the debate on 606

Early start?

1508: Promising for Wales, but David Edwards and Simon Davies leave the ball for each other in the Finland penalty area. The ball eventually falls to Craig Bellamy but Sami Hyypia blocks his effort.

1505: Craig Bellamy is caught late by Roman Eremenko and far from thrilled. Wales work the ball down the right but Gareth Bale's cross is cut out by Bolton's Jussi Jaaskelainen.

1503: An early injury scare for Simon Davies, who hurts himself making a tackle but is fit to carry on.

1501: Plenty of early touches for the Welsh, though Lewin Nyatanga's long ball up field is easily cut out by Sami Hyypia.

1500: The match starts at the Millennium Stadium. Bright sunshine in Cardiff, but will the Welsh be under a cloud later?

1455: The Wales and Finland teams are out on the pitch at the Millennium Stadium. We are into the anthems.

1453: "Northern Ireland have to win today or else our qualifying hopes are up... So come on NI and beat Poland 2-0."
Anonymous via text on 81111

That match, don't forget, comes later.

1450: More Scotland team news
As well as Ross McCormack and Gary Teale, BBC Scotland understands that Christophe Berra will also face the Dutch. Kenny Miller will play as the lone striker. That game kicks-off later at 1945 GMT.

1449: Finland team news
Finland, managed by Englishman Stuart Baxter, include Liverpool's Sami Hyypia, Bolton's Jussi Jaaskelainen, Fulham's Toni Kallio and Hibernian forward Jonatan Johansson in their team.

Jari Litmanen and Mikael Forssell, both of whom have played in England, are also in their starting line-up. Wales might have youth on their side, but Finland boast plenty of experience.

Finland: Jaaskelainen, Pasanen, Kallio, Hyypia, Tihinen, Aleksei Eremenko, Roman Eremenko, Forssell, Litmanen, Heikkinen, Johansson. Subs: Maenpaa, Sjolund, Porokara, Moisander, Nyman, Sparv, Kuqi.

1446: Russia and Azerbaijan, two teams in the same group as Wales, are currently in action. Russia lead 1-0 with a certain Roman Pavlyuchenko on the scoresheet.

1445: Just to put the Wales game in perspective - John Toshack's side are currently third in Group Four, four points behind Germany and level with Russia, who have a game in hand.

Top spot would see Wales qualify automatically, second would put Toshack's side firmly in the hunt for a play-off place as eight seconds places from the nine groups will contest them. As Craig Bellamy said, the game with Finland is "make or break". Because if they lose they will concede valuable ground in the hunt for second.

1442: "I live in Holland and I can tell you all that the Dutch are taking this game against Scotland very seriously.

"I don't think that it will be a walkover for the Dutch."
eirebilly on 606
Join the debate on 606

1439: Wales team news
James Collins and Craig Bellamy start after being passed fit earlier in the week - they were the two doubts.

Lewin Nyatanga starts alongside Collins at the back instead of Ashley Williams as John Toshack opts for four in defence as opposed to their usual three-man central defence with wing-backs.

1433: Wales, don't forget, have won their two home World Cup qualifiers so far, against Azerbaijan and Liechtenstein.

1431: Wales team
Wales: Hennessey, Gunter, Bale, Fletcher, Collins, Nyatanga, Davies, Bellamy, Koumas, Ledley, Edwards.
Subs: Myhill, Cotterill, Evans, Williams, Ramsey, Robinson, Earnshaw.

1429: "There will be a goal fest in Amsterdam so it will be awful to watch for Scotland fans. I'm afraid we are going to get hammered." Bandrew Arrie on 606
Join the debate on 606

I'm sure some people said that before your encounter in Paris with the French. Though the Netherlands are very much played three, won three so far in Group Nine.

1424: Plenty of other action worth keeping an eye on today. The Republic of Ireland host Bulgaria for starters, while Spain are looking to stretch their unbeaten run at home to Turkey.

1420: "England To Win, Scotland To Lose, Wales To Win, Northern Ireland To Draw."
The_names_ SIR_ Alex on 606
Join the debate on 606

1412: Scotland team news
Some early Scotland team news, courtesy of BBC Scotland's Chick Young. Cardiff's Ross McCormack will start, as will Gary Teale of Derby. Surprising or what?

1410 GMT: Super, smashing, great.

We have a massive day of international football in store, with huge World Cup qualifiers for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, plus a friendly for Fabio Capello's England.

Scotland are arguably top of the bill, with their encounter in Amsterdam. Then again, I asked a Welsh colleague how important the match between Wales and Finland rates on a scale of one to 10 and he went straight to Bo Derek.

Northern Ireland are second in Group Three and also face a key encounter against Poland at Windsor Park.

And then there is the little matter of England's game against Slovakia. Not a World Cup qualifier granted, but Fab's team need to get back to winning ways after the reverse in Spain.

Saturday - it should have something for everyone.



Print Sponsor


see also
Wales 0-2 Finland
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
Netherlands 3-0 Scotland
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
Northern Ireland 3-2 Poland
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
Worthington targets more success
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
England 4-0 Slovakia
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
Injury-hit England call up Bent
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals
Beckham reaches new caps landmark
28 Mar 09 |  Internationals


related bbc links:

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.