World Cup 2010
Match Reports

England 2 Belgium 1
Friendly
Stadium of Light, Sunderland, England - Sunday 10 October 1999


For the first time since May 1997 England played a home game away from Wembley Stadium. The Stadium of Light saw some bright moments during this friendly. The first flash came six minutes into the game when Belgium conceeded a corner which resulted in Shearer, with his back to the net, scoring an excellent goal after a build-up from a corner ball by Guppy, Adams and Lampard. This was a great way to celebrate England being one step closer to the Euro 2000 finals, after qualifying for the playoffs a day earlier when Sweden beat Poland, which kept England in second place in Group 5.

Eight minutes after England took the lead Belgium brought the score level when Strupar broke down the left of the field to receive the ball from Oyen. England's goal was open for Strupar to put the ball in the net. The play then centred around Belgium who looked to have control of the game for a while. De Bilde beat Dyer and unleashed a shot but an England player was there to block the shot reaching David Seaman. There was danger for England again moments later when Ince committed a foul leaving Belgium to set up a play 25 yards away from the home side's goal. England prevented the ball from becoming a threat and eventually they created a chance of their own when newcomer Phillips received the ball from his captain, but Belgium's goalkeeper raced off his line to collect the ball.

Guppy was involved in England's chances towards the latter stages of the first half. The Leicester City player was in space after a back-heel from Phillips, but Geert de Vlieger touched the ball, which then went across the end line for a corner. Unfortunately England did not sieze the opportunity. Guppy then caused problems again for the Belgians when he delivered a lovely cross but the visitors were reprieved when England headed the ball for a goalkick.

Both teams changed their goalkeepers at the interval. Nigel Martyn replaced David Seaman and Gaspercic replaced De Vlieger. Gareth Southgate made an important play early in the second half when he intercepted a shot on goal after Keown lost the ball on the halfway line. Then a moment later Frank Lampard almost scored on his debut but the Beglium goalkeeper tipped the ball for a corner.

Jamie Redknapp added to England's great goals of the afternoon when he scored his first international goal - a spectacular goal from 25-yards with his left foot. England at last had regained the lead, however Belgium almost scored a second goal as they tried to capitalise on the re-start but Martyn reacted well.

Southgate ventured up the field with 20 minutes remaining and tried his luck from a similar position to Redknapp but his effort failed as the goalkeeper caught the ball. All was not over for Belgium as they tried in the dying minutes of the game to level the score but Van Meir's header went comfortably to Martyn.

With Owen replacing Phillips earlier in the second half England seemed to have a new dimension. Owen caused trouble for the Belgians but nothing materialised. Heskey however looked to be in scoring opportunity when a backpass by the visitors had him racing past the goalkeeper and towards the net but his shot from a tight angle hit the post and the chance was missed. The final whistle blew minutes later and England won this friendly with two delightful goals.


Teams

ENGLAND:
Seaman (Martyn 46 mins), Dyer (P Neville 58 mins), Southgate, Adams, Keown, Guppy, Lampard (Wise 76 mins), Ince, Redknapp, Shearer (Heskey 86 mins), Phillips (Owen 58 mins).
Subs Not Used: Le Saux, Scholes. (Full Squad)

BELGIUM:
De Vlieger (Gaspercic 46 mins), Deflandre, Peeters, Van Meir, Oyen, Tanghe (Walem 46 mins), Van de Haeghe, Wilmots, Van Kerckhoven, De Bilde, Strupar (Brogno 74 mins).
Sub Not Used: Pierre, Brocken, Goor, Clement.


Match Details

England Scorers: Shearer 6 mins, Redknapp 66 mins
Belgium Scorer: Strupar 14 mins

England Caution: Owen
Belgium Caution: Van de Haeghe

Referee: Anders Frisk (Sweden)

Attendance: 40,897