England beat Croatia 3-1 thanks to a first-half penalty from captain David Beckh
England beat Croatia 3-1 thanks to a first-half penalty from captain David Beckham and further goals from Michael Owen and Frank Lampard. TheFA.com takes a look at how each of Sven's men played...
1. David James
Appearing for England for the 17th time, the West Ham stopper played the first half before being replaced at half-time by Leeds' Paul Robinson. In that first period, England's defence struggled to contain the threat posed by Croatia's forward runners and time after time James was called upon to make important saves.
Particularly impressive was his save from the feet of Olic after he intercepted a Beckham pass and his long range shot stopping.
2. Philip Neville
Another assured performance from England's right-back. It may come as a surprise to many to learn that the Manchester United utility player has now earned 41 caps but after another impressive game, more seem sure to follow.
3. Ashley Cole
Arsenal's flying left-back, making his 20th appearance for England, showed just why Sven preferred him to Chelsea's new signing, Wayne Bridge.
Just short of the hour mark, Cole made a typical run down the left wing before delivering a cross towards Michael Owen who was unfortunate to get the ball stuck under his feet.
Replaced on the hour by Bridge.
4. Steven Gerrard
Quite possibly the brightest jewel in the England crown, Gerrard continued his remarkable record of never having lost whilst playing for England.
The Liverpool maestro has played 19 times for England and in those games the Three Lions have won fifteen times and drawn four times.
In Ipswich, Gerrard was his usual self, charging all over the England midfield, collecting the ball before distributing intelligent passes to colleagues - Sven must treasure him as the important qualifiers approach.
5. Rio Ferdinand
A rather quiet match for the 24-year-old manchester United centre-back. With regular partner Sol Campbell out injured, Rio took a little while to develop a relationship with John Terry but after one or two scares he settled into the pace of the match.
6. John Terry
Sven and England are fortunate to have such a galaxy of young centre-backs at his disposal. Along with Ferdinand, Campbell, Southgate, Woodgate, Upson and others, Chelsea's John Terry has now established himself as an important part of Sven's squad.
Increasingly assured as the match went on, Terry seems so at home on the international stage and this was made apparent when he was handed the captaincy towards the end of the match.
7. David Beckham
Real Madrid's new signing was making his first appearance in England since his big-money move to the Spanish champions and he was instrumental in much of England's good play.
It was his pin-point cross towards Michael Owen at the back post that forced the penalty out of Josip Simunic and the captain dispatched the spot kick with ease.
Six minutes into the second period, beckham received a great pass form Gerrard before swinging in a wonderful cross for Owen to head home for England's second.
Substituted for Sinclair on the hour, Beckham now has 12 goals in 61 games for his country.
8. Paul Scholes
How Scholes must wish he could somehow grab a goal for his country. Up until England's match in Athens against Greece in June 2001, the Man Utd midfielder was a prolific goalscorer for his country.
Since then no goals but, like he did tonight, Scholes time and again shows that there is far more to his game than ghosting into the area to score. Much of England's play against Croatia went through him and he continues to work well with Beckham and Gerrard in England's midfield.
9. Emile Heskey
Owen's club and country strike partner had one of his better games last night as he tormented the Croatian defence with his speed and agility. Turned his man a couople of times to fire in dangerous shots before coming off for James Beattie with 14 minutes left.
10. Michael Owen
What can you say? Owen now has 23 goals from a total of 53 caps of which only 41 have been starts. Sven realises just how good Owen is and the Liverpool man showed his importance to the side by scoring England's all-important second goal minutes into the second half.
Getting between his markers, Owen timed his run into the area perfectly to head home David Beckham's right-wing cross low into the bottom right-hand corner of the Croatian goal.
11. Nicky Butt
Operating as England's holding midfielder, Butt took a couple of knocks early on and went down needing treatment only 20 minutes into the game.
Came off for Frank Lampard after 27 minutes.
16. Frank Lampard (for Nicky Butt, 27)
Another great performance in an England shirt. Frank is now really establishing himself in England's midfield squad and with a big season of Champions League football coming up, he can really push for a starting place in Sven's first choice XI.
Scored a special, special goal moments after Croatian had pulled one back... he smacked James Beattie's lay-off straight into the very top right-hand corner, giving Butina no chance.
13. Paul Robinson (for David James, 45)
Good, solid performance. Did nothing wrong even for the Croatian goal - having already made a save to deny an earlier opportunity, he wasn't in a position to keep out Mornar's effort.
14. Wayne Bridge (for Ashley Cole, 60)
Despite having swapped Southampton for the more glamourous surroundings of Chelsea, Bridge still looks to be the same dependable player we have become used to.
15. Matthew Upson (foe Rio Ferdiand, 60)
Picked up for valuable experience at the start of his international career. How Steve Bruce, his manager at Birmingham City, must enjoy seeing his young centre-back excel in such giood company.
18. Kieron Dyer (for Michael Owen, 60)
Had a goal disallowed for offside, though television replays suggest that it was a tight call. was given a wonderful reception by his old Ipswich fans.
19. Joe Cole (for Paul Scholes, 60)
Great cameo performance from Chelsea's new star. Skipped past players like they weren't there and passed intellidently.
This is a big season for young Joe - a year of learning by playing alongside the likes of Juan Sebastian Veron will do him the power of good.
21.Trevor Sinclair (for David Beckham, 60)
Replaced David Beckham, but couldn't influence the match as much as he would have liked.
20. James Beattie (fior Emile Heskey 76)
The big Saints striker got an assist to his name as he provided the perfect set-up ball for Lampard's fabulous goal.
12. Danny Mills (for Phil Neville, 81)
Made a few late bursts forward but otherwise quiet. Only on the pitch for 10 minutes.
17. Danny Murphy (for Steven Gerrard, 81)
Like Mills, Murphy came on too late to really make an impression.
by James Wright at Portman Road