Spain strike late to hold England

November 16, 2016
Isco (right) scores late for Spain as they drew 2-2 with hosts England in a friendly match at Wembley Stadium in London yesterday.

LONDON (AP):

England players celebrated taking a 2-0 lead over Spain by contributing to the mannequin challenge but then froze on the field, conceding two late goals to allow the visitors to snatch a 2-2 draw yesterday.

England felt so relaxed with a two-goal cushion after Jamie Vardy's 48th-minute goal at Wembley Stadium that the striker performed the latest Internet craze, where people freeze in dramatic poses, along with teammates.

The video will spread online, but England won't want to see the end of the friendly game again.

Iago Aspas marked his Spain debut by curling in an 89th-minute strike and Isco slipped the ball under substitute goalkeeper Tom Heaton in the sixth minute of stoppage time. It ensured Julen Lopetegui maintained his unbeaten start as Spain coach, since replacing Vicente del Bosque after the team's European title defence ended in the round of 16 in June.

England also made a managerial change after going out at the same stage in France, embarrassingly to Iceland. England began to rebuild under Sam Allardyce, but he was ditched after only one game over unguarded comments to undercover reporters.

Gareth Southgate has steadied England with four games unbeaten, including two wins and a draw in World Cup qualifying, and he is now likely to be handed the job on a permanent basis.

But England conceding late goals to a second-string Spain side will be a blot on his record.

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