Alexis Sanchez inflicted England’s first defeat in a year as Chile repeated the famous winning blueprint of Marcelo Salas and 1998.
Roy Hodgson made eight changes from the final World Cup qualifying win over Poland last month. Only Leighton Baines, Gary Cahill and Wayne Rooney remained. Glen Johnson, Frank Lampard and Jack Wilshere returned.
Three alterations were made to the back five as Fraser Forster made his England debut in goal instead of Joe Hart. Chris Smalling dropped out and Phil Jagielka saw his centre back pairing with Gary Cahill broken up as Phil Jones got the nod. Attacking players Daniel Sturridge and Andros Townsend were subs.
Southampton pair Adam Lallana and Jay Rodriguez flanked Wayne Rooney in attack on their senior international bows. James Milner lined up in midfield alongside Frank Lampard, who skippered the side. Steven Gerrard, Danny Welbeck and Michael Carrick missed out through injury.
Chile meanwhile were without Juventus’s Arturo Vidal and one-time Manchester City loanee David Pizarro from their midfield. Cardiff City holding midfielder Gary Medel played in central defence. Alexis Sanchez of Barcelona and Wigan Athletic’s Jean Beausejour played wide.
Despite a strong start and going close when Claudio Bravo kept out Phil Jones’s set piece header, England fell behind on seven minutes. A high defensive line and in particular Leighton Baines were caught out by Chile.
Eduardo Vargas and Charles Aranguiz saw shots blocked, Beausejour held the ball up, allowing Eugenio Mena to cross up from left back and he found Sanchez who headed home. Chile continued to counterattack after absorbing England pressure with Forster doing just enough off his line to stop Beausejour.
Bravo in the visiting goal was far busier. He saved low from Lallana and tipped a deflected Lampard free kick over the bar. Medel then turned a Milner effort behind. Wilshere’s half volley later stung the palms of the Chile keeper.
Jones flicked a corner just wide with an outstretched leg as England continued to spurn a glut of chances. Wilshere and an otherwise isolated Rooney then combined to get Lallana in behind, but his effort deflected off Mena. The Lions went in behind.
Last ditch defending from Chile and a torrid time for Baines continued after the break. A short corner routine almost backfired on England as Sanchez broke before being stopped. Forster later spilled a Mena centre and was lucky that no visiting player was placed for a tap in.
Hodgson withdrew the ineffectual Rodriguez before the hour and threw on Townsend. Nottingham Forest’s Gonzalo Jara entered the action for Chile and head-butted fellow sub Chris Smalling in the chest at a set piece. He escaped with a booking.
Wilshere was then involved in a coming together with Beausejour as a nasty undercurrent simmered beneath the surface of this friendly. Frustration became palpable and despite Hodgson making other alterations the night ended in defeat.
Man of the match Sanchez capped his display by scoring a second in stoppage time. He clipped over Forster with a classy finish to seal victory and a consummate away day for Chile.
Younger Lions names like Townsend, Jordan Henderson, Tom Cleverley, Ross Barkley and the Southampton pair all failed to stake claims to build on fledgling international careers here. Hodgson will have to go back to the drawing board with bitter rivals Germany next.
- England: 1 Fraser Forster, 2 Glen Johnson, 5 Gary Cahill, 6 Phil Jones (12 Chris Smalling 57’), 3 Leighton Baines, 4 James Milner (21 Jermain Defoe 66’), 8 Frank Lampard (c) (19 Jordan Henderson 71’), 7 Jack Wilshere (18 Ton Cleverley 71’), 9 Adam Lallana (17 Ross Barkley 77’), 10 Wayne Rooney, 11 Jay Rodriguez (20 Andros Townsend 57’) 4-3-3
- Chile: 1 Claudio Bravo (c), 4 Mauricio Isla (18 Gonzalo Jara 60’), 17 Gary Medel, 3 Marcos Gonzalez, 2 Eugenio Mena, 20 Charles Aranguiz (6 Carlos Carmona 46’), 21 Marcelo Diaz, 14 Matias Fernandez (9 Felipe Gutierrez 46’), 7 Alexis Sanchez, 17 Eduardo Vargas (16 Carlos Munoz 71’), 15 Jean Beausejour (22 Jose Pedro Fuenzalida 82’) 4-3-3
- Goals: Alexis Sanchez 7’, 90’+4