The Sun: GIVEN the nod to start ahead of Frank Lampard after his decent performance in the 2-1 win against Germany last November. Did not make the best of it though as he was too slow in making passes and watched the game pass him by. Nowhere near his club form and in the company of Xavi, Xabi Alonso and Andres Iniesta looked out of his depth 4
The Times: Preferred to Frank Lampard after a good performance against Germany, but failed to take full advantage. Showed glimpses of class but prone to drifting out of the game, and his elegant passing was made to look ponderous by the speed of Spain’s counter-attacks 5
The Independent: Much more than a defensive midfielder these days, he tried to push forward in Manchester United mode but without much success 6
The Mirror: Did not give the ball away but did little with it going forward either. His passing was neat but Xabi Alonso and Marcos Senna are a class act to battle against 6
The Guardian: Oozed class as a calm midfield distributor, even if he was able only to produce flashes of the creativity England craved. His few misplaced passes rather stood out amongst the assured touches and metronomic supply line 8
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