England player ratings: Mason Mount stars in deeper role as Jack Grealish shows glimpses of class
ENGLAND cruised to a 3-0 win over the Republic of Ireland at Wembley on Thursday.
Goals from Harry Maguire, Jadon Sancho and Dominic Calvert-Lewin saw Gareth Southgate’s men warm up for Sunday's Nations League clash with Belgium in style.
But who was a roaring success for the Three Lions tonight? And did anyone have a game to forget?
Here, SunSport’s Mark Irwin delivers his England player ratings…
NICK POPE 6
WITH so many questions being asked about Jordan Pickford, this was a chance for Pope to stake his claim to become England’s regular number one.
Certainly a lot calmer than his rival keeper but he didn’t have a save to make and his kicking and distribution still need working on.
MICHAEL KEANE 7
THE Everton centre-half has never really convinced in an England shirt but Joe Gomez’s knee injury means he is going to play a greater role in Southgate’s plans.
Difficult to draw too many conclusions on a night when Ireland didn’t threaten at all but he can be more than satisfied with a solid and trouble-free performance.
HARRY MAGUIRE 8
HANDED the captain’s armband for the first time, which was a real vote of confidence from Southgate after the defender’s nightmare display against Denmark last month.
Repaid that faith with England’s opening goal and almost scored again with another firm header which required a sharp save from Darren Randolph.
TYRONE MINGS 7
THE loudest man in Wembley never stopped organising his team-mates and is growing in confidence with every game for his country.
Never any chance of anyone knocking off with the Villa foghorn bellowing in their ears but he probably should have scored early on when he headed over when free at the back post.
REECE JAMES 8
THE Chelsea wing-back is suspended for next week’s games against Belgium and Iceland so he knew he had to shine in this one and certainly didn’t disappoint.
Covered so much ground down the right flank and used his pace to stretch Ireland to breaking point. Trent Alexander-Arnold has a real fight on his hands.
MASON MOUNT 8
UNFAIRLY accused of being the teacher’s pet, the young midfielder showed just why he is so highly rated by Southgate and by Frank Lampard.
Playing in a slightly deeper role this season, his work-rate, energy and passing ability was there for all to see and must have worn himself out with the amount of corners he delivered into the danger zone.
HARRY WINKS 7
MIGHT be considered fortunate to keep his place in the squad considering he hasn’t started a Premier League game for Spurs in almost two months.
But showed once again that he is more than capable stand-in for Jordan Henderson or Declan Rice and provided the perfect cross for Maguire’s 18th minute opener.
BUKAYO SAKA 7
THE young wing-back looked a lot more composed than he did on his England debut against Wales last month.
Almost pounced on an early goalkeeping error and missed a decent chance at the start of the second-half before winning the penalty for his team’s third goal.
JADON SANCHO 7
BACK with a bang after missing last month’s internationals for breaking lockdown rules, this was a timely reminder of the Dortmund forward’s credentials.
Clever early flick almost set up Mings before he claimed his first England goal in more than a year when he beat Randolph with a precise shot through the legs of Jeff Hendrick.
DOMINIC CALVERT-LEWIN 8
THE in-form striker had no hesitation stepping forward to dispatch the 56th minute penalty for his 13th goal of a remarkable season for club and country.
Didn’t give the Irish defence a moment’s peace with his willingness to compete for everything and has muscled his way ahead of Tammy Abraham for the right to understudy Harry Kane.
JACK GREALISH 7
THE former Irish Under-21 international was clearly out to make a point and gave us the full repertoire of flicks and tricks to bewilder his opponents.
It was his pass which gave Sancho the time and space to score and if he carries on like this it’s going to be harder and harder for Southgate to leave him out of his starting line-up.
Dean Henderson (for Pope HT) 6
A virtual spectator and it is going to be difficult for him to move up the England pecking order until he is playing regular first team football for Manchester United.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles (for Mings 61mins) 6
Introduced as a right wing-back with James going into the middle but wasn’t able to provide the same attacking threat..
Phil Foden (for Grealish 61mins) 6
Just happy to be back in the England fold after his Iceland shenanigans and couldn’t have asked for an easier reintroduction to international football.
Tammy Abraham (for Calvert-Lewin 63mins) 6
On for his first England appearance since last November’s 7-0 win against Montenegro but couldn’t get the goal he desperately wanted
Jude Bellingham (for Mount 73mins) 6
The 17-year-old midfielder became the third youngest player in England history behind Wayne Rooney and Theo Walcott following his promotion from the Under-21s.
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