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On November 30, 1872, Scotland and England played the first match between national football teams. That game, that ended with a goalless draw, opened a long journey for the 'Three Lions'. 146 years, 11 months and 13 days after the duel in Glasgow, England’s men played on Thursday against Montenegro their 1000th match and they couldn’t have celebrated this special occasion in a better way after winning 7-0.
Welcoming some of our most iconic players to our 1??0??0??0??th game.— England (@England) November 14, 2019
Good to have you with us for the night, gentlemen! pic.twitter.com/rlNYQowdFl
"It will be a very special encounter. Our story is fascinating and the future exciting, with this generation of young people full of talent. But the most important thing will be to win," said Gareth Southgate, English coach, before the match. The words of the coach showed the importance of the clash, since with a victory the ‘Three Lions’ would qualify for the EURO 2020 and finish as leaders of Group A. Indeed, the players listened to their coach and achieved one of the greatest wins in their history, also ensuring their presence in next summer’s continental tournament. Southgate was one of the 1,244 players who have dressed the English shirt in all this time, and responsible for giving the alternative to the most recent English international, James Maddison on Thursday evening.
Harry Kane, captain number 122 of England’s history, was the great star of the night with his hat-trick and continues to increase his numbers as top active English scorer with 31 goals, which leaves him increasingly closer to Wayne Rooney, top historical scorer with 53. Other illustrious as Bobby Charlton (49), Gary Lineker (48), Jimmy Greaves (44) and Michael Owen (40) stand between them. "It was an honor to be the captain in this historic match," Tottenham striker said
The glory came in 1966. The most important match in the history of the English national team was number 409. On July 30, 1966, England defeated Federal Germany 4-2 and won the World Cup for the first and only time in its history. Geoffrey Hurst's three goals - one of them the mythical 'ghost' goal in extra time - and a target by Martin Peters allowed Captain Bobby Moore to raise the Jules Rimet Cup, producing one of the most iconic images in football history. The victory against the German team was one of 569 victories against 91 different rivals.
The toughest defeat was a 7-1 against Hungary in 1954 and another painful setback for the 'Three Lions' occurred against Spain. In Madrid, in 1929, England lost (4-3) for the first time to a non-British or Irish national team. Over these 146 years, England has played in 225 stadiums spread across 75 countries. Wembley is the field in which they played more duels: 223 in the previous version of the stadium and 65 in the current one, and Scotland with 114 games was the opponent they faced the most.
Among the 143 clubs that had players who played with England, Tottenham is the king with 78 internationals. The record holder of matches is goalkeeper Peter Shilton, with 125 games, in which he kept a clean sheet in 66 (also a record). The top scorer Wayne Rooney is also the youngest to celebrate a goal with England: he did it with 17 years and 317 days when he scored against Macedonia in 2003. Numbers of an incomparable journey that still has a long way to go.
Great night at @wembleystadium for the 1??0??0??0??th game celebrations. Good catch up with some old @england teammates and legends and well done again to the squad on qualifying for #EURO2020 ???????????????????????????????? pic.twitter.com/00gOy3KeCG— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) November 15, 2019
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