England's Jack Wilshere challenges Brazil's Lucas (L)
during their international friendly match at Wembley
stadium in London. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth
Luiz Felipe Scolari's second coming as Brazil manager
ended in defeat as goals from Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard
earned England a 2-1 victory in a prestige Wembley friendly.
Veteran Ronaldinho, who donned the famous yellow shirt for
the first time in a year, missed a first-half penalty for the
five-time world champions and England capitalised when Rooney
gave the hosts a 27th-minute lead.
Substitute Fred equalised for Brazil just three minutes after
coming on and struck the crossbar as Scolari's side came
alive in a fixture arranged to kick off the 150th anniversary
year of the Football Association.
Lampard, one of six Chelsea players on display including
Ashley Cole making his 100th appearance for England, sent the
majority of the 87,000 fans home happy with a superb curled
winner on the hour.
England hung on with few alarms for their first victory over
Brazil in nine attempts stretching back to 1990.
The match began at sedate pace with with only an early burst
from Neymar briefly raisiing the decibel level, although his
touch let him down badly.
Brazil keeper Julio Cesar did well to claw away a Rooney
header although the wshistle had already been blown.
Scolari's side had the better of the opening 20 minutes and
Ronaldinho earned a penalty when his cross was handled by
With boos ringing round, however, the architect of much pain
for England and English clubs down the years, had his
spot-kick saved low down by Joe Hart who reacted superbly to
deny Ronaldinho on the follow-up.
The let-off energised England and they went ahead when
Wilshere, proving more useful at the other end, slid in Theo
Walcott whose shot was saved by Cesar, only for Rooney to
cooly steer a shot through a crowd of players.
Neymar was struggling to live up to his pre-match hype and
the Santos player somehow contrived to scoop the ball over
the bar from Oscar's teasing cross.
A raft of halftime substitutions, including Ronaldinho's
removal from the action after a disappointing 45 minutes and
the introduction of former Everton player Fred, revived the
England defender Gary Cahill carelessly conceded possession
after 48 minutes and was left with his head in his hands
after Fred lashed Brazil's equaliser past Hart in front of a
sizeable Brazilian contingent behind the goal.
Rattled, England almost went behind immediately when Fred
curled a fierce shot on to the crossbar, but Roy Hodgson's
side quickly regained their poise and went back in front on
Rooney snatched possession from Arouca's weak pass and he
teed up Lampard who curled a precise shot from outside the
area past the despairing dive of Cesar and in off the post.
Brazil thraetened sporadically after that but Scolari, who
led them to victory at the 2002 World Cup, was left with much
to ponder as he prepares to lead the hosts at next year's