LONDON (AA) – A persistent Turkish side lost 2-1 against England in a friendly football match Sunday, the first of three before next month’s Euro 2016 finals.
The closely fought match at Manchester Etihad Stadium saw both countries dominate at different stages of the game but striker Jamie Vardy's goal from close range in the 83rd minute sealed the victory for England.
The English side had gone ahead after just three minutes when midfielder Dele Alli’s quick pass found the feet of Tottenham Hotspur teammate Harry Kane.
Kane tapped the ball in despite the assistant referee failing to call what appeared to be a clear offside.
But the visitors responded 10 minutes later when Hakan Calhanoglu scored an equalizer – Turkey’s first-ever goal against England.
Turkey showed spirit and retained possession in the first minutes of the second half, but appeared to lose command after Vardy was pushed down in the penalty area.
Although Kane shot the subsequent penalty wide, the opportunity helped England manager Roy Hodgson’s side regroup.
Turkey has two more pre-tournament friendlies scheduled against Montenegro and Slovenia in the coming weeks, while England will face Australia and Portugal before the Euro 2016 tournament kicks off on June 10 in France.