The ADL Index – World Cup 2010 player ratings – Slovenia 0-1 England

On the back of a dire 0-0 draw against Algeria on Wednesday, England had to win against Slovenia yesterday to have any chance of advancing into the Last 16. Fabio Capello’s decision to play Jermain Defoe ahead of Emile Heskey was vindicated 20 minutes in when the Tottenham Hotspur man fired home a James Milner cross from close range. A revitalised England continued to press for a second but were unable to add to their lead. In the end, the single goal was enough to take England through to the last 16, but only as runners-up to the United States who scored late on in their match with Algeria. As fate would have it, England must now play Germany on Sunday.

Starting line-up

         
         
   

Substitutions
72: Joe Cole on for Wayne Rooney
86: Emile Heskey on for Jermain Defoe

1 David James
Position: Goalkeeper
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/180
Rating (game/tournament average): 8/7

Picked ahead of Robert Green once again but justified Capello’s decision with a strong performance between the posts. England’s No 1 was called into action on a few occasions in the first half but looked comfortable with a watertight back four in front. He had very little to do in the second half but kept his concentration to see the game through to the end. A failsafe performance must surely guarantee him the starting place for the last 16 match on Sunday and beyond.

2 Glen Johnson
Position: Right-back
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/270
Rating (game/tournament average): 7.5/7

Johnson was unfairly yellow carded for simulation early in the second half but continued to tackle hard until the final whistle. Always an option for Milner ahead of him, Johnson’s crossing ability gave the Slovenian’s something else to think about on the right.

6 John Terry
Position: Centre-back
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/270
Rating (game/tournament average): 8.5/7

Outstanding all match with a domineering presence from start to finish, Terry made two crucial blocks, one in the first half and one in the second, to keep England’s heads above water. Terry pulled off an exemplary performance at the heart of the defence, after making the front pages for all the wrong reasons this week.

15 Matthew Upson
Position: Centre-back
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/90
Rating (game/tournament average): 8/8

In his first World Cup game, Upson gelled nicely with Terry to keep everything tied up at the back. He had an unsteady start and gave the ball away unnecessarily on a few occasions but settled down and gave a sound performance. Although Jamie Carragher will be available for Sunday’s match, Capello may opt for Upson after today’s performance.

3 Ashley Cole
Position: Left-back
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/270
Rating (game/tournament average): 8/7

One of England’s most consistent performers all tournament, Cole continued to threaten going forward without abandoning his defensive responsibilities. In attack he brought a natural balance to the left side with Steven Gerrard playing in front, and was always an option outside the captain.

16 James Milner
Position: Right-midfield
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/119
Rating (game/tournament average): 9/7

Provider of Defoe’s goal, Milner looked dangerous on the right from the start with a steady supply of excellent crosses and England should have had more goals courtesy of this man. After being left out of the Algeria match, Milner showed why so many clubs are interested in him back home. Although most lethal in the final third, Milner continued to track back and help Johnson keep the Slovenian left flank quiet all match.

14 Gareth Barry
Position: Centre-midfield
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/173
Rating (game/tournament average): 7/7

Quietly efficient, Barry was not one of the more frequent names to be uttered by the commentators but this did not reflect his performance for England today. Sitting just in front of the back four, he allowed Frank Lampard to go forward and do what he does best. An unglamorous performance, but the part he played in today’s victory was crucial at the heart of the team.

8 Frank Lampard
Position: Centre-midfield
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/270
Rating (game/tournament average): 7/6.5

Lampard had the freedom to roam forward and join the attack with Barry sitting behind. Should have scored a second in the first half but fired high and wide from the edge of the box. Otherwise did very little wrong and provided the two wide players with the ammunition to put the crosses into the box that were so lethal. It was an encouraging performance from someone who has not pulled his weight up until now.

4 Steven Gerrard
Position: Left-midfield
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/270
Rating (game/tournament average): 7.5/7

One player the nation can always count on, the Captain had an all inspiring performance today out on the left. Combining with Ashley Cole down the left flank, they made an imposing pairing to create some great chances inside the box. Apart for some excellent goalkeeping by Samir Handanovic, England would have scored a few more goals thanks to this man.

19 Jermain Defoe
Position: Forward
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 90/107
Rating (game/tournament average): 8.5/7

The silent assassin had a quiet opening twenty minutes but proved worthy of his place in the starting XI with the goal on 22 minutes. Slovenia did their best to slow down the tempo England were setting as they pressed for a second, but Defoe’s haste and doggedness to shutdown ensured their back four did not dwell on the ball for too long.

10 Wayne Rooney
Position: Forward
Minutes played (game/tournament total): 72/252
Rating (game/tournament average): 7.5/7

The fact Rooney still has not scored at this World Cup should not go against his performance today. England’s number 10 has not looked quite as s

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