A goal and a dance: How England’s new boys fared at Wembley

England’s friendly with the United States at Wembley was billed as remembering the past, marking Wayne Rooney’s impressive contribution to his country’s cause.

But is was also a chance for a sneaky peak into the future as Callum Wilson and Lewis Dunk were handed debuts while Jadon Sancho was given a first start. Alex McCarthy also came on as a second-half substitute.

Here, Football Paradise assesses the impact the quartet made.

Callum Wilson

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Debut delight. 😀

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Striker Wilson has been rewarded for scoring seven goals in 14 appearances for Bournemouth this season and started in front of regular captain Harry Kane. Against such weak opposition he was always going to be in the game and missed a glorious chance to get on the scoresheet after only eight minutes when he did not connect properly with Jesse Lingard’s cross, before trying to win a penalty when going down under a challenge from goalkeeper Brad Guzan.

He continued to put himself about, showing off his physicality, and eventually got his reward with a 77th-minute goal when he tucked home Fabian Delph’s cross. It was his final act as he came off soon after, but he became the first ever Bournemouth player to score for England on a night to remember.

Jadon Sancho

Sancho, who was two when Rooney made his Three Lions debut, was named in the starting XI for the first time, following his substitute’s appearance in Croatia last month. In doing so, he became the first outfield player to start for England while representing a non-UK club since David Beckham in 2009.

If the English public did not know too much about him before this outing, they do now as he highlighted exactly why he has been such a key player for Borussia Dortmund. He showcased his quick feet by performing a celebratory dance with Jesse Lingard after the opening goal and then two minutes later bagged an assist by cleverly playing in Trent Alexander-Arnold. His influence faded in the second half but we are going to see plenty more of him over the years.

Lewis Dunk

Dunk’s start saw him become the first Brighton player to pull on an England shirt since Steve Foster played in the 1982 World Cup and is a result of some consistent showings for the Seagulls in the Premier League. Given this was an exercise in English attack versus American defence, Dunk’s capabilities were not put under any true test. However, the bits he had to do he did well, particularly an early clearing header, while he looked comfortable on the ball.

Alex McCarthy

Jordan Pickford has the number one position locked down, but there is a healthy battle for the number two goalkeeping position and Southampton’s McCarthy was given his chance to shine after coming on as a half-time substitute. As with Dunk, he was never going to have the busiest of nights, but did everything he had to tidily and without fuss.

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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