Lallana: My first goal was 'a dream' but win most important

Monday 05 Sep 2016
Adam Lallana celebrates his goal to see off Slovakia in England's opening 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier

Adam Lallana spoke of his double delight after scoring his first England goal to secure a last-gasp win over Slovakia.

The play-maker had not scored in his previous 26 appearances, but at last broke his duck deep into injury time in Trnava.

Slovakia 0-1 England

2018 FIFA World Cup Russia
European Qualifiers (Group F)
5pm (BST), Sunday 4 September
City Arena, Trnava (Slovakia)


It had looked like the Three Lions would be held to a draw in Sam Allardyce's first game in charge, despite Martin Skrtel – a former Liverpool team-mate of Lallana's – being sent off just before the hour mark.

But the visitors continued to push at the City Arena and, after Lallana had hit the post and Theo Walcott had a goal ruled out, duly got their reward in the fifth minute of stoppage time.

"Anyone will tell you it's a dream to score for your country as a kid," the 28-year-old told FATV after the game.

"When you score in the last few seconds, it is a good feeling, especially having rattled one off a post a little bit before. 

"The most important thing was getting the three points and getting off to a good start under the new regime. We've had a good week, and all the hard work has paid dividends."


Watch Lallana's post-match interview via FATV's YouTube channel



Lallana admitted that, as the game whiled away, he had feared a repeat of the stalemate between the two sides at Euro 2016 a few months ago.

But he hailed the team's perseverance: "I thought we were very patient, and we had to be.

"Theo's effort was legitimate and probably should have counted, but the lads stuck together, remained patient and eventually got the goal in the last 20 seconds.

"It was a great feeling, I'm not going to lie about that, but the main thing was the three points, definitely."


Watch Lallana score England's winner at Trnava's City Arena


Next up for the Three Lions is a return to Wembley Stadium – tickets for the 2018 World Cup qualifier against Malta start at £20 for adults and £10 for under-16s, and are available from now.

By Jim Lucas