European Championship Qualifying - Group A
England5Kosovo3

England 5-3 Kosovo: Kane and Sterling score for hosts

Jadon Sancho
Sancho scored his first two international goals for England

England's relentless march towards Euro 2020 continued with a thrilling victory over Kosovo, who scored after just 34 seconds.

However, a shoddy defensive display and the fearless approach of their opponents meant this turned into a night of concern for manager Gareth Southgate.

The result leaves England top of Group A with a 100% winning record after four games, while the Czech Republic moved into second place with a 3-0 win over Montenegro.

Kosovo arrived in Southampton on a 15-match unbeaten run and with confidence lifted by victory over the Czechs on Saturday - and when Michael Keane's error gifted Valon Berisha a goal inside the first minute they briefly contemplated a huge upset.

It did not last long as rampant England, inspired by the magnificent Raheem Sterling, responded ruthlessly with five goals inside the first 45 minutes.

Keane swiftly made amends to set up Sterling to head home after a corner then Manchester City's unstoppable attacker set up captain Harry Kane for his 26th goal in 41 England appearances.

England extended their lead when Mergim Vojvoda turned Jadon Sancho's cross into his own net before Borussia Dortmund's 19-year-old got his first two goals for England, both expertly provided by Sterling.

As an occasionally chaotic encounter swung from end to end, Berisha's fine finish reignited Kosovo's hopes early in the second half before more awful defending from Manchester United's Harry Maguire ended with him conceding a penalty, which Vedat Muriqi scored after he was brought down.

England's flair and flaws on show

England manager Southgate will have revelled in his side's attacking variety and intent as they ripped Kosovo apart with those five goals in the first 45 minutes - but this was nothing like plain sailing.

Sterling's ascent into world-class for club and country needs no confirmation and it was all on show as he tormented the Kosovo defence, scoring one goal and creating three as a wounded England hit back after that early shock.

Kane once again demonstrated his expertise in front of goal while Sancho repaid Southgate's faith with two goals and a fine performance that earned him a standing ovation when he was substituted.

So far so good. And then came England's defending.

Everton defender Keane had an inexcusable lapse to pass the ball straight to Berisha in a dangerous position to score the first in the opening minute and the sense of threat every time Kosovo got near England's goal was an illustration of their defensive unease.

And defensive partner Maguire was no better, clumsily failing to clear before hauling down Muriqi for the penalty.

In the end there was no long-term harm done thanks to England's potency up front but it is impossible to escape the belief that this defence, and the ability with which Kosovo could get at it, would be relished by better opposition.

England can celebrate the win and taking a giant stride towards Euro 2020 - but there are still problems for Southgate to ponder.

Kosovo's fearless approach does them proud

Kosovo were not going to wait and wonder what fate held for them as they fulfilled colourful coach Bernard Challandes' boast that they would come at England with positive intent.

Backed by a magnificent, noisy support, they had the boost of that early goal and in some ways their front foot approach cost them as England cut them apart when they poured forward.

It would have been easy to give up or go into their shell at 5-1, but they came out for the second half to a huge ovation from their fans.

And how they responded, to occasionally have England living on their nerves.

They could not complete the miracle turnaround but they fully deserved the standing ovation from their fans at the final whistle and they will still harbour hopes of being at Euro 2020 next summer.

Man of the match - Raheem Sterling (England)

Raheem Sterling
Sterling now has 10 international goals for England and was a menace all evening

Super Sterling - the stats

  • England have netted 14 goals in their three home European Championship qualifiers, scoring more home goals than any other European nation in qualifying so far.
  • Kosovo became the first team to score three away goals in a competitive international against England since Croatia in November 2007.
  • England have scored five goals in three different matches in 2019 - the first time they have done so that many times in a calendar year since 1960.
  • Valon Berisha's goal after 34 seconds was the first goal scored inside the first minute of an England international since Gareth Southgate scored against South Africa in May 2003.
  • England conceded a goal inside the opening minute of an international match for the first time since November 1993, when San Marino's Davide Gualtieri scored.
  • Raheem Sterling has been involved in 12 goals in his last eight England international appearances (8 goals, 4 assists).
  • Harry Kane and Sterling have combined for six goals under Gareth Southgate for England - at least three times as many as any other duo.
  • Jadon Sancho (19 years, 169 days) became the youngest player to score more than once in a game for England since Wayne Rooney in June 2004 against Croatia (18 years, 241 days).
  • This was the first time both teams had scored three times in an England match since June 1995, when they drew 3-3 with Sweden at Elland Road.
  • Kane's missed penalty ended a run of 23 consecutive penalties scored in competitive internationals by England players - David Beckham's at Euro 2004 against France was the previous miss.

What next?

The next international period takes place in October, with England travelling to the Czech Republic on Friday 11th, followed by an away game in Bulgaria three days later.

Line-ups

England

  • 1Pickford
  • 2Alexander-Arnold
  • 5Keane
  • 6Maguire
  • 3Chilwell
  • 8Henderson
  • 4Rice
  • 10BarkleySubstituted forMountat 83'minutes
  • 11SanchoSubstituted forRashfordat 85'minutes
  • 9Kane
  • 7Sterling

Substitutes

  • 12Trippier
  • 13Heaton
  • 14Rose
  • 15Gomez
  • 16Mings
  • 17Winks
  • 18Mount
  • 19Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 20Maddison
  • 21Rashford
  • 22Pope
  • 23C Wilson

Kosovo

  • 12Muric
  • 15Vojvoda
  • 13Rrahmani
  • 3AlitiBooked at 70mins
  • 2Hadergjonaj
  • 4VocaSubstituted forRashkajat 59'minutesBooked at 86mins
  • 8HalimiBooked at 63mins
  • 10MuslijaSubstituted forPaqaradaat 45'minutesBooked at 65mins
  • 9Celina
  • 14BerishaBooked at 83minsSubstituted forHasaniat 85'minutes
  • 18Muriqi

Substitutes

  • 1Ujkani
  • 5Dresevic
  • 6Rashkaj
  • 7Hasani
  • 11Rashani
  • 16Bekaj
  • 19Paqarada
  • 20Kryeziu
  • 21Nuhiu
  • 22Zhegrova
  • 23Berisha
Referee:
Felix Zwayer
Attendance:
30,155

Match Stats

Home TeamEnglandAway TeamKosovo
Possession
Home58%
Away42%
Shots
Home16
Away8
Shots on Target
Home10
Away3
Corners
Home6
Away0
Fouls
Home5
Away9

Live Text

Match ends, England 5, Kosovo 3.

Full Time

Second Half ends, England 5, Kosovo 3.

Marcus Rashford (England) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Amir Rrahmani (Kosovo).

Foul by Raheem Sterling (England).

Amir Rrahmani (Kosovo) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Ben Chilwell (England) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Florent Hasani (Kosovo).

Corner, England. Conceded by Mergim Vojvoda.

Attempt missed. Bersant Celina (Kosovo) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Leart Paqarada.

Booking

Anel Rashkaj (Kosovo) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Offside, England. Marcus Rashford tries a through ball, but Raheem Sterling is caught offside.

Attempt saved. Marcus Rashford (England) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Mason Mount.

Substitution

Substitution, Kosovo. Florent Hasani replaces Valon Berisha.

Substitution

Substitution, England. Marcus Rashford replaces Jadon Sancho.

Substitution

Substitution, England. Mason Mount replaces Ross Barkley.

Booking

Valon Berisha (Kosovo) is shown the yellow card.

Raheem Sterling (England) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Valon Berisha (Kosovo).

Attempt missed. Michael Keane (England) header from a difficult angle on the right is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jordan Henderson with a cross following a corner.

Corner, England. Conceded by Florent Hadergjonaj.

Attempt blocked. Raheem Sterling (England) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jadon Sancho.

Attempt saved. Raheem Sterling (England) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Harry Kane with a through ball.

Attempt missed. Bersant Celina (Kosovo) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Anel Rashkaj.

Attempt missed. Trent Alexander-Arnold (England) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right from a direct free kick.

Booking

Fidan Aliti (Kosovo) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Jadon Sancho (England) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Fidan Aliti (Kosovo).

Foul by Ben Chilwell (England).

Florent Hadergjonaj (Kosovo) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Penalty saved! Harry Kane (England) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom left corner.

Booking

Leart Paqarada (Kosovo) is shown the yellow card.

Booking

Besar Halimi (Kosovo) is shown the yellow card.

Penalty England. Ross Barkley draws a foul in the penalty area.

Penalty conceded by Amir Rrahmani (Kosovo) after a foul in the penalty area.

Substitution

Substitution, Kosovo. Anel Rashkaj replaces Idriz Voca.

Raheem Sterling (England) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Besar Halimi (Kosovo).

Corner, England. Conceded by Fidan Aliti.

Goal!

Goal! England 5, Kosovo 3. Vedat Muriqi (Kosovo) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the bottom right corner.

goal

As It Stood

A

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1England44001941512
2Czech Rep53029819
3Kosovo5221101008
4Montenegro5023313-102
5Bulgaria5023511-62

B

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Ukraine54101111013
2Portugal422010468
3Serbia52121012-27
4Luxembourg511358-34
5Lithuania5014415-111

C

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Germany54011761112
2Northern Ireland540174312
3Netherlands430114599
4Belarus5104310-73
5Estonia5005218-160

D

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1R. of Ireland532062411
2Denmark5230155109
3Switzerland422010468
4Georgia511348-44
5Gibraltar5005016-160

E

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Croatia5311105510
2Slovakia53029729
3Hungary53027619
4Wales42024406
5Azerbaijan5014513-81

F

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Spain66001731418
2Sweden6321138511
3Romania6312137610
4Norway623111839
5Malta6105213-113
6Faroe Islands6006320-170

G

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Poland641182613
2Slovenia6321125711
3Austria6312136710
4North Macedonia62228808
5Israel6222111108
6Latvia6006121-200

H

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Turkey65011421215
2France65011941515
3Iceland6402109112
4Albania630310919
5Moldova6105217-153
6Andorra6006014-140

I

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Belgium66001911818
2Russia65011841415
3Kazakhstan621389-17
4Cyprus621311657
5Scotland6204513-86
6San Marino6006028-280

J

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Italy66001831518
2Finland640284412
3Armenia6303121119
4Bos-Herze6213121117
5Greece6123710-35
6Liechtenstein6015119-181
View full European Championship Qualifying tables

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