England completed a famous and deserved victory over Brazil at Wembley last night after goals from Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard were good enough to overcome Fred’s strike just after half-time. Apart from the opening period of both halves England dominated the game and for the first time in many attempts managed to keep the ball on the ground and play a neat passing game in the offensive third; helped largely by the Arsenal contingent of Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott.
While Tom Cleverley and Wayne Rooney were also exceptional the Arsenal pair were easily the outstanding performers in England shirts at Wembley; in fact if you were to have squinted at times you would have fought the duo were in fact wearing the famous gold-blue-and-white of Selecao.
Wilshere was particulary impressive in the first half. His desire to keep the ball grounded and run at players with intent is unparalleled in the England team. Having the desire to do such things is one part of the deal but actually having the talent to do so is another; and he certainly has both. Recent comparisons from Liam Brady to the currently struggling English hero Paul Gascoigne certainly carried credence on this evidence however I would go one step further and claim he is better.
I have stated previously that I feel Cleverley and Wilshere can become our very own version of Xavi and Iniesta and yesterday the two played the nearest to that standard English football has seen in the last generation of talented players.
The second half belonged to Theo Walcott who tormented Barca left-back Adriano with his pace and control to the point when a huffing-and-puffing Blaugrana was hauled off for Filipe Luis.
For Arsenal fans it would have been good viewing but not just due to the duets performance; but also considering one of the Brazilians who in particular toiled against their collective talent.
However last night he upended Wilshere when the Arsenal playmaker skipped by him and when Walcott stepped inside he burned the Bayern man for pace and trickery on every occasion.
Based on the evidence on show at Wembley these two certainly had the beating of the Bayern centre-back and that psychological edge could also be a factor when Arsenal face Bayern Munich over two legs in the Champions League.
Do you think Walcott and Wilshere have struck an early blow for Arsenal?