INTERNATIONALS: ENGLAND SLIP BUT CECH SAVES SPOT-KICK
A special presentation made to Frank Lampard ahead of England's friendly international at Wembley on Friday night was not matched by the result.
Chile were the visitors and ran out 2-0 winners, Barcelona's Alexis Sanchez heading in with seven minutes gone and then grabbing a second goal deep into stoppage time.
On what was his 103rd appearance, Lampard was presented with a golden cap to mark his 100th earlier in the season, with his father and two daughters (who were mascots) present at the ceremony prior to kick-off.
In the absence of Steven Gerrard, Lampard captained a semi-experimental side containing three debutants in Southampton pair Adam Lallana and Jay Rodriguez plus Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster, and had a deflected free-kick pushed over by the keeper in the first half, before being substituted on 70 minutes.
Gary Cahill played the full match against a side ranked 12th in the world but Ashley Cole remained on the bench, indicating he will return to the line-up for Tuesday's home match against Germany, who were also in action on Friday evening.
Andre Schurrle, who scored four goals in last month's two World Cup qualifiers, started his nation's match away against one of their traditional rivals, Italy, held in the San Siro. Schurrle played 59 minutes and hit the crossbar with a first-half volley when the score was 1-1 which was the final result.
In friendly matches for two of our players who will not be going to the World Cup, Petr Cech had to earn his clean sheet as Czech Republic beat Canada at home. Our keeper saved a 39th-minute penalty from Dwayne De Rosario with a sharp dive to his right.
Branislav Ivanovic was part of the Serbia team that drew 1-1 with Russia in a match hosted in Dubai.
In European Under-21 Championship qualifiers, defender Andreas Christensen played the full match as Denmark won 3-2 away in Bulgaria to keep them top of their group. The score was 1-1 in Belgium Under-21s' match away in Serbia when Thorgan Hazard was substituted with 81 minutes played. It ended 2-2 with Belgium levelling four minutes into added time to go four points clear at the top of their group.
On Thursday night, Stipe Perica, who is on loan at NAC Breda in the Netherlands, played for Croatia Under-21s at home to Switzerland. He was a 52nd-min sub with Matej Delac, who is on loan in Serbia at Vojvodina, coming on even earlier to replace the original goalkeeper. However Switzerland won 2-0 to cut Croatia's group lead to three points having played a game less.