De Jong has last laugh as Holland beat England
- 29 February 2012 22:11
- Posted by David Clayton
Nigel de Jong was the only City player left smiling as Holland beat England 3-2 in a thrilling friendly at Wembley.
De Jong played the entire game as no less than five of his club team-mates did their utmost to drag the Three Lions back into the game after they’d conceded twice in a minute just before the hour.
Stuart Pearce’s side staged late comeback, but were scuppered by Arjen Robben’s injury time winner.
Micah Richards looked as though he’d never been away from the England side after a confident, solid display during his first game since November 2010.
Richards, who collected a yellow card in an all-action performance, was a constant threat down the flanks and linked up well with Adam Johnson, who also had an impressive game.
The City winger sent in a supply of good crosses that weren’t converted and he went close himself with a deflected shot in the first half. He was replaced after 63 minutes by Stewart Downing.
Gareth Barry shored up the midfield in typically tidy fashion in the first 45, though was frustrated by a fussy referee who penalised him several times for borderline challenges. Barry made way for club team-mate James Milner at half-time.
Joe Hart saved well from Robben in the first half but could nothing about his goal on 57 minutes or Holland’s second scored 60 seconds later by Klaus Huntelaar.
England fought back through late goals from Gary Cahill and Ashley Young, but Robben had the last laugh with an injury time deflected winner.
Joleon Lescott was the only City star not to see any action on the night.