Rooney's double helps England floor Scotland
Updated: 2014-11-19 10:58
England's Wayne Rooney (C) celebrates his seconnd goal with Adam Lallana (L) and Kieran Gibbs during their international friendly soccer match against Scotland at Celtic Park Stadium in Glasgow, Scotland November 18, 2014. [Photo/Agencies]
GLASGOW - England captain Wayne Rooney scored twice after Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain headed the opener in a 3-1 win over Scotland as the visitors dominated a typically passionate Auld Enemy friendly at Celtic Park on Tuesday.
Rooney took his tally to 46 in his 101st international to move within three goals of Bobby Charlton's England scoring record of 49 and led by example as skipper with his composed side proving too strong for the hosts.
Before the game there were fears that crowd trouble might erupt in the first football fixture between the two rivals since Scotland voted to remain part of the United Kingdom in a historic referendum in September.
Tuesday's friendly, however, passed off peacefully with no reports of violence.
England were 2-0 ahead with seven minutes to play but Scotland came back when Andrew Robertson planted a left-foot shot past former Celtic keeper Fraser Forster to make it 2-1.
But two minutes later Rooney finished off a well-worked move involving substitutes Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert by turning the ball into the net from close range before leaping into an acrobatic celebration.
Oxlade-Chamberlain opened the scoring when he glanced the ball home with his head after a superb pass from his Arsenal team mate Jack Wilshere to score after 32 minutes, reward for England taking control after a frenetic opening to the game.
Rooney headed England 2-0 in front in the 47th minute after Scotland failed to clear a free-kick.
The home side pulled a goal back when Robertson beat Forster at his near post before Rooney wrapped up the victory from close range after a superb swift-passing move down the right.
The home side, who have improved since Gordon Strachan became manager early last year, only had one real goal chance before scoring when Russell Martin forced Forster to palm the ball over the bar early in the second half.
There was a raucous atmosphere generated by both sets of supporters in a near-capacity 60,000 crowd in the build-up to kickoff.
Tensions between the two not-always friendly neighbours might have been exacerbated away from the pitch by the recent independence referendum in which the Scots voted 55 percent to 45 to preserve the 307-year union with England.
But apart from the obvious booing of the national anthems most of the derision was directed at the two sets of players.
The opening 20 minutes were predictably frenetic without much shape or substance but England gradually began to look the more assured side with Wilshere in the middle and Nathaniel Clyne on the right causing the home side problems.
It was the first match between the two neighbours, who until 1989 met annually, on Scottish soil since 1999 and England have now won seven of their last nine meetings with the Scots.