England may sit top of their Euro qualifying group with three wins from three but they have failed to impress so far after a lacklustre World Cup in the summer that saw them eliminated after only two games.

Wayne Rooney scored his 43rd goal in England colours 17 minutes from time to maintain Roy Hodgson’s men’s 100% winning record in their qualifying games so far. But when two of these have been against lowly opposition such as Estonia and, last week, San Marino, it is hardly a flattering outcome.

England enjoyed a great deal of the possession but struggled to make any inroads in the final third as their hosts stood firm and fought even despite the 48th minute dismissal of their captain Ragnar Klavan for a second bookable offence.

This lack of cutting edge was addressed by Hodgson in the second half with the introduction of Raheem Sterling and  Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for Fabian Delph and Jordan Henderson. But it was England captain Rooney who made the decisive blow and struck in the 73rd minute with a curling right foot free kick after Sterling was fouled on the edge of the box.

Hodgson should have no problem steering this team, freely splattered with youth, to the Euros in two year’s time. But low turnouts for England matches at Wembley suggest fans are disengaged with the performances they are seeing and on this basis there is still quite a way to go to win them back. 

Photo: via Getty.