Soccer

England manager Gareth Southgate to ‘pull rank’ following Jordan Henderson’s penalty miss

Jordan Henderson takes the ball from Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Gareth Southgate has said he will talk to Jordan Henderson over his decision to “pull rank” and take England’s second penalty in the 1-0 win over Romania on Sunday.

With England’s designated takers Marcus Rashford – who scored his second-half penalty to earn England their win – and James Ward-Prowse substituted, Henderson seemed to take the ball from Dominic Calvert-Lewin after the Everton striker was fouled in the box.

Henderson, who was making his first appearance since February after a long injury absence, saw his kick saved by goalkeeper Florin Nita, and Southgate confirmed afterwards that the Liverpool captain had incorrectly intervened

“I was expecting Dominic to take it and when Hendo walked over I thought he was making sure that happened, so I will have to check what happened,” Southgate told ITV.

“We will pull rank next time,” he added.

On England’s performance, the manager said his side “improved” as the game progressed and was pleased with the display one week before their opening fixture against Croatia on 13 June.

“We had chances to make it more comfortable but so did they, the first half we did not work hard enough without the ball, we were too stretched and did not press well.

“After half-time, I thought we improved and it was helpful we went to 4-3-3 later and I have to say it was a good exercise, players needed the minutes and learned a lot from the game. Good to win.”

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