KEIR RADNEDGE at WEMBLEY: England headed for the Euro 2016 finals with all the confidence engendered by victories in their three warm-up matches after a 1-0 win over Portugal.
This was the most disappointing of England’s performances after the earlier defeats of Turkey and Australia, the potential of the game upset by the early expulsion of Bruno Alves for kicking Harry Kane in the head.
In the end it was not until five minutes from the end that Chris Smalling glance-headed the only goal from a left-wing cross by newly-arrived substitute Raheem Sterling.
England manager Roy Hodgson said: “It was disappointing tonight that it didn’t stay at 11 against 11 which left us trying to break down a well-organised defence.
Patience and composure
“But we showed more patience and composure in our play than before so there were positives in terms of both performance and from going into a tournament having won three games on the spin.
“You never suffer from winnig matches but it’s good that we haven’t sailed through the matches, winning them all 4-0 or people would saywe should now go on and win the thing.
“Each game has shown up areas to work on and improve upon but, in the two and a half weeks we’ve been together, the players have been excellent in knuckling down and I’m happy were on the right track.
“We’ll go on to France reasonably confident that we can keep this going.”