Euro 2016 qualifiers: England struggle to beat 10-man Estonia

England preserved their perfect Euro 2016 qualifying record by beating Estonia 1-0, though they made to work hard by a stubborn Estonia side.

Even after Estonia captain Ragnar Klavan was sent off for a second booking early in the second half in Tallinn, Roy Hodgson’s England still laboured to see off the Baltic minnows. 

 Ragnar Klavan gets shown his second yellow card. Photo: AFP

It took a Wayne Rooney free-kick 17 minutes from time for England to finally break the deadlock. 

Even though the 28-year-old stands on the precipice of history (he is now six goals away from equalling Bobby Charlton's 49-goal record) his performance did done nothing to quell questions over his place in England's pantheon of greats.

He should have settled the match in the dying minutes of the match but he failed to take advantage of Jack Wilshere's sumptuous through ball by hitting it straight at the Estonian goalkeeper.

Luckily for him and England, he was on target earlier with his free-kick.

Rooney scoring the vital free-kick. Photo AFP

Hodgson though was pleased seeing his rock-solid defence achieve a fifth successive clean sheet for the first time in eight years.

“It was hard work. We played well in the first half without taking our chances and that meant there was an air of frustration setting in,”

Hodgson told broadcaster ITV: “Everyone was aware that when you have played well you have to take at least one chance. Luckily we did that in the second half.

“It was a good free-kick from Wayne and it’s four wins in a row, which is not to be sniffed at.”

Source: AFP, Vine

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