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England escape after super substitutions

CATALYST: It was Danny Welbeck's good work that turned the game around

ENGLAND WERE inspired by a trio of young substitutes as they grabbed a crucial group point from Ukraine in their second World Cup qualifier at Wembley. An 87th minute Frank Lampard penalty, after late home pressure, secured a point for Roy Hodgson's side.

The hosts had been trailing by a Yevhen Konoplianka goal after the winger sent home a curling right foot shot from fully 25 yards in the 39th minute.

The visitors put the Three Lions on the back foot early on, as they showed their intent to go home with something in the opening game of their qualifying campaign.

It appeared as though the home side had broken the deadlock in the 10th minute when Jermain Defoe came in from the left and sent a pinpoint shot into the back of the net. But the referee ruled the goal out after deciding that the Tottenham man had fouled Andriy Yarmolenko in the build-up.

It seemed harsh by the referee, Cuneyt Cakir, and a slight exaggeration from the Ukraine player. Both were examples of things to come.

Konoplianka was the key man as the Yellow-Blues had the majority of possession and prevented England from doing anything constructive in the final third.

It took England 58 minutes to draw level and much of that was down to Manchester United forward Danny Welbeck. He had been England manager Roy Hodgson’s first substitute, replacing Tom Cleverley just after the hour.

Cleverley had been impressive in the 5-0 win over Moldova last time out but he was unable to repeat anything like that type of display at the home of football tonight, missing three gilt-edged chances that could have brought the home side back into the game.

The same could be said of Arsenal teenager, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who was smothered by the Ukrainian defence whenever England managed to get him on the ball. He was replaced by Daniel Sturridge, shortly after Welbeck joined the play.

But it was the energy of Welbeck, Sturridge and fellow substitute Ryan Bertrand that got Hodgson’s men back into the tie.

First Welbeck hit the woodwork and it was his good play in the box that led to a penalty appeal after the ball was handled by a visiting defender. The reliable Frank Lampard did the rest from the spot.

The celebration of the equaliser was short-lived as captain, Steven Gerrard, was sent off for a second bookable offence.

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