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Five things we learned from England’s win against Peru

Wayne Rooney England friendly

England were comfortable 3-0 winners against Peru at Wembley on Friday.

It was the Three Lions’ final home game before the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil.

Here are the five things we learned from England’s performance.

1) Rooney weighed down by expectation

Wayne Rooney continues to underwhelm: a heavy touch, seemingly a yard off the pace and turning in an abject display lacking in confidence. This was the Manchester United striker’s first match in a month and it showed. England manager Roy Hodgson defended his 'rusty' striker, praising his 'commitment and attitude'. But for all the workman-like graft and tireless running, Rooney's lacklustre performances are becoming ominously run-of-the-mill. The weight of expectation is perilously evident.

2) Sturridge is the talisman

The Liverpool striker's Man-of-the-Match display, coupled with his brilliantly taken opening goal, underlines how vital he will be in Brazil. With Rooney struggling for form, Daniel Sturridge has emerged as England's talisman. The 24-year-old’s instinct for goals and irrepressible self-belief make him a dangerous proposition for any defence this summer.

3) Slow tempo in preparation for Manaus

England's tempo, particularly in the first half, was slow and sluggish. For all the appetite to witness a hell-for-leather attacking display, it is clear that Hodgson's men have been training for a belt and braces approach in preparation for the sweltering conditions of Manaus, host city of their opening World Cup game against Italy on June 14. On this evidence, expect to see a reactionary, pacey counter-attacking philosophy deployed in Brazil.

4) Sterling should start

The introduction of Raheem Sterling on 66 minutes brought with it an injection of pace and a tenacious desire to run with the ball. The 19-year-old replaced Rooney, but with the United forward a guaranteed starter in Brazil, Danny Welbeck is the most likely to be replaced. Sterling's dynamic ability to terrorise defenders makes him, on balance, a more positive selection than the dependable Welbeck.

5) Defensive cracks may be exposed

Although England were largely untested at the back, lapses in concentration were a worry. Despite Peru's mediocrity, they were still gifted a couple of opportunities — opportunities which Edinson Cavani, Luis Suarez and Mario Balotelli are unlikely to squander.

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