Kane’s Penalty Gives England 2-1 Victory Against Switzerland

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Harry Kane converted a 78th-minute penalty to give England a 2-1 victory against Switzerland in a friendly match at Wembley, taking the striker alongside Bobby Charlton on 49 England goals and behind only Wayne Rooney (53).

England manager Gareth Southgate gave debuts to Marc Guehi and Kyle Walker-Peters and a first start to Conor Gallagher, while the Swiss were at full strength.

The visitors went ahead when England centre back Ben White misjudged an excellent Xherdan Shaqiri cross and Breel Embolo nodded in.

Switzerland striker Breel Embolo (7) scores against England at Wembley

England keeper Jordan Pickford made two excellent saves to deny Granit Xhaka and Fabian Frei as the hosts created almost nothing until first-half stoppage time.

Gallagher sent over a low cross and Shaw crashed home a superb shot from the edge of the box.

England defender Luke Shaw scores goal against Switzerland

The first 15 minutes of the second half passed without incident and then a total of eight substitutes – four for each team – came on, including another England debutant Tyrick Mitchell.

Neither side looked capable of creating chances. However, the decisive goal came via a VAR ruling that Steven Zuber’s handball was worthy of a pitch-side look. The referee eventually pointed to the spot and Kane slammed the ball home hard and low.

Harry Kane celebrates goal against Switzerland

Kane’s goal made it 10 wins and three draws against the Swiss since a World Cup qualifying defeat in 1981.

Both teams will be in Qatar for this year’s tournament, and neither coach will have learned a great deal from Saturday’s game, which was largely short of intensity and goalmouth action.

“It’s big year ahead, a chance to try some different systems, different formations,” Kane said. “There’s always room for an improvement but it was a good win to start the year.

“We rotated the squad a bit, some new faces made their debuts, which was great, and these are the games where we need to try stuff. We haven’t got a lot of time so all this information is key.”

England will play another international friendly match against Ivory Coast, at Wembley on Tuesday.

International Friendly results

Central African Republic 0-0 Sudan

Croatia 1-1 Slovenia

Guinea-Bissau 2-3 Angola

Niger 1-2 Libya

Republic of Ireland 2-2 Belgium

England 2-1 Switzerland

Spain 2-1 Albania

Qatar 2-1 Bulgari

Germany 2-0 Israel

Chidi Nwoke/Reuters.

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