- Norway 0-1 England, International friendly
Hodgson's reign off to a winning start
Roy Hodgson's tenure as England manager got off to a winning start thanks to Ashley Young's ninth-minute goal against Norway in Oslo.
Young, the Manchester United winger, beat Fulham defender Brede Hangeland far too easily before slotting a scuffed shot into the far corner to give the Three Lions an early lead, one they would hold onto for the remainder of the match.
Rob Green, given the nod in goal, was called into action at a number of points during the course of the 90 minutes, but overall the away side were relatively comfortable - although Hodgson will perhaps want his side to show more attacking invention and intent when they play Belgium in the final warm-up game for the European Championships
The line-up selected by Hodgson is likely to bear little resemblance to the side which will face France in the Euro 2012 opener in 17 days time.
Only Andy Carroll, skipper Steven Gerrard, Scott Parker and Ashley Young are near certainties to play in Donetsk and the entire back five will probably change.
But there were still encouraging signs for Hodgson, who maintained the record of no England manager having been beaten in their opening game since Alf Ramsey in 1963.
Young looked sharp and confident in the second striker role and showed encouraging signs in tandem with Carroll.
Parker looked to be suffering no ill-effects from his Achilles problem and dictated and bossed the midfield in his 55 minutes of action.
Centre-back Joleon Lescott also staked his claim to have a major role in Hodgson's plans in Poland and Ukraine with a commanding performance.
Hodgson handed striker Carroll his first start for 14 months in a line-up which showed seven changes from the side which started against Holland at Wembley in February.
Gerrard skippered the side for the 16th time - but the first as official England captain.
Carroll threatened the first moment of danger when he got on the end of a left-wing cross from Stewart Downing but headed wide under pressure from Brede Hangeland.
After nine minutes the sharp-looking Young broke the deadlock. Carroll played the ball to the Manchester United winger, who turned past Norway skipper Brede Hangeland before firing a low shot past Rune Almenning Jarstein into the far corner of the net.
Norway retaliated and Robert Green reacted well to parry aside a rising shot from Markus Henriksen which deflected off Leighton Baines.
But the West Ham keeper was relieved when the resulting inswinging corner from Blackburn midfielder Morten Gamst Pedersen struck the near post.
England looked the more dangerous and Norway were again stretched when James Milner broke down the right and, after cutting inside, he forced Jarstein to save at his near post.
Gerrard was spoken to by German referee Michael Weiner shortly before half-time after showing his studs in a challenge on Tom Hogli, who tried to resume after treatment but was substituted and replaced by Espen Ruud.
The Liverpool player was booed by Norway fans for the remainder of the half and did not start the second half - as indicated by Hodgson yesterday. Barry came on and took over the armband - until his early exit with a worrying hamstring injury.
Young was quickly back into his stride after the break and earned a free-kick on the edge of the box after being fouled by Vadim Demidov.
Baines' free-kick flew right through the defensive wall and forced a fine low save by Jarstein away to his left.
Riise continued to look Norway's most dangerous player and he skipped past substitute Theo Walcott before forcing Green to parry out a near post drive.
Ruud made good contact on a 20-yard volley but it flew straight at Green.
Hodgson gave debuts to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Martin Kelly in the closing stages - as replacements for Young and Phil Jones respectively - as England held on with relative ease for the victory in warm conditions.