England's match against Turkey tonight is not the first time
England 2-2 Greece: England's match against Turkey tonight is not the first time that the Three Lions' qualification for a major tournament has come down to one game. TheFA.com looks back at a past crunch qualifier...
England 2-2 Greece
2002 World Cup, Group 9 Qualifier
Old Trafford, Manchester
06 October 2001
Objective: England needed to match Germany's result in their game against Finland the same afternoon.
After all the uncertainty of the previous twelve months, England finally confirmed their place in the World Cup Finals with this last-gasp draw against Greece at Manchester United's Old Trafford Stadium.
A relieved Eriksson said: "It was a great day for English football. Not necessarily in the way we played, because we have most certainly played better than we did today, but in the drama of the game."
The unfancied Greeks had played with skill, confidence and a tactical awareness that threatened to trip England up as they looked to overcome their final qualifying hurdle.
Twice the Three Lions were indebted to Nigel Martyn for goal-saving blocks as the Leeds 'keeper proved once and for all that he is a man who can rise to the biggest of international occasions. D
Despite Martyn's brilliance, and the obvious class of substitute Teddy Sheringham - who equalised to make it 1-1 with his first touch, seconds after coming on - England's hero of the hour was David Beckham.
The home side had looked on edge long before Greek striker Choristeas silenced Old Trafford with a low angled shot that gave them the lead on 36 minutes. After Sheringham had glanced in Beckham's free-kick within about ten seconds of entering the action midway through the second period, England were shocked by another Greek goal just three minutes later. Nikolaidis pounced on a loose ball to fire clinically past a stranded Martyn.
Then up stepped Beckham to save the day with a fabulous free-kick. No Hollywood scriptwriter could have penned the scenario more perfectly as the talismanic Manchester United midfielder, easily England's best performer on the day, stepped up to take his place in history.
A succession of free-kicks came England's way before Sheringham won one just a few yards outside the penalty-area, right in the middle thus making it difficult for the Greeks to line up an effective defensive wall. Beckham wrapped his foot around the ball, sending it over the hastily formed Greek wall and into the very top right-hand corner of Nikopolidis' goal... the crowd's cheer all but lifted the roof off the stadium as England were level!
With Germany only managing a 0-0 home graw against Finland, Sven's team had come from being bottom of Group 9 to winners and were through to the 2002 World Cup.
England: Martyn, G Neville, Ashley Cole (McManaman, 78), Gerrard, Ferdinand, Keown, Beckham, Scholes, Fowler (Sheringham, 67), Heskey, Barmby (Andy Cole, 45)
Subs Not Used: Southgate, Wright, Carragher, Murphy
Greece: Nikopolidis, Patsotzoglou, Dabizas, Vokolos, Costas Konstantinidis, Fissas, Zagorakis (Basinas, 56), Kassapos, Karagounis, Charisteas (Lakis, 73), Nikolaidis (Machlas, 86).
Subs Not Used: Venetidis, Georgiadis, Chalkias, Vrizas. Referee: Dick Jol (Holland) Attendance: 66,009
Objective: Achieved. David Beckham's late goal sent England off to Japan for the 2002 World Cup where, after a glorious win over Argentina, defeat to Brazil ended their World Cup dream.