88% pass-accuracy but Aston Villa's Fabian Delph flatters to deceive for England

The 25-year-old midfielder put in a frustrating performance in Tuesday night's 1-1 draw with Italy.

After an impressive outing in last week’s 4-0 win over Lithuania, Aston Villa midfielder Fabain Delph couldn’t muster a similar performance in England’s 1-1 draw with Italy in Turin.

The Villa ace managed 92 passes, two shots, two key passes, two tackles, an interception and 99 touches of the football in the previous Euro 2016 qualifier but it was a different story when up against stronger opposition in the Azzurri.

Earning his fifth cap and second consecutive start, Delph proved frustratingly erratic in possession, misplacing passes in important areas and struggling to provide England’s front three with the desired service before going off with 21 minutes left.

While his 88 per cent pass completion rate looks commendable on the surface, it was his failure to deliver in the final third which was most disappointing and, as the stats show, he seemed to be cruising through most of the night in first gear.

  ShotsKey PassesTotal PassesPassing AccuracyTotal CrossesAccurate CrossesTotal DribblesTotal TacklesInterceptionsTouchesDispossessedMins Played
Fabian Delph 0 0 60 88% 3 1 1 1 0 66 1 69

More frustrating, though, was the fact that Delph's replacement, Andros Townend, managed to make the crucial breakthrough for Roy Hodgson's men, netting a scorching strike 10 minutes after his introduction to cancel out Graziano Pelle's first-half opener.

After that moment of magic, Hodgson might have felt his side could have left Turin with the win had the Tottenham Hotspur winger been on from the start and, while he no doubt helped push himself further into his international manager's future plans with his contribution, his Villa-owned teammate can't say the same.

Competition in the England midfield is fierce at this point and, though Delph seems to be in favour for now, a long-term place in the squad is far from guaranteed if he can't produce on a consistent basis.

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