England secured their World Cup Qualification with a late Harry Kane goal despite a lacklustre performance at Wembley this evening.The match provided few moments of excitement as an organised Slovenian outfit battled hard against an unimaginative English display.

Fans had to wait until injury time to be rewarded with a 93rd minute Harry Kane goal which was the result of a trademark piece of wing play by the ex-Tottenham fullback Kyle Walker.The Manchester City man powered down the right-hand side to provide his old teammate with an excellent cross to feet.

Kane continued his club goalscoring form despite having a largely ambiguous game, coolly slotting it past the Slovenian keeper Jan Oblak.

The late goal did nothing to cover up an otherwise uninspiring England show. You would have easily forgotten that a win in this evenings fixture would guarantee England an automatic World Cup place. Fortunately for the three lions, the late goal spared the side from having to secure a result in Lithuania on Sunday.

Sluggish and unimaginative

The match eased into an all too familiar pattern from the start.During the first half England looked sluggish and unimaginative during their long periods of possession, rarely asking questions of the dogged Slovenian defence.

Much of the first 45 was dominated by sideways passing and a chronic lack of spark in the attacking areas.

Much of this was the result of Raheem Sterling’s poor performance, who was playing behind Kane in a central role. The forward, who usually plays out wide, showed his inexperience in the position, regularly running down blind allies and getting muscled off the ball.

One bright spark in an otherwise flat routine was Marcus Rashford who continued his thrilling club form, using his trickery and pace to regularly beat his opposite number in the Slovenian defence.

But it was Slovenia who arguably hauled in the best chances during the first period. Josip Iličić was denied a penalty within the first 15 minutes, while Roman Bezjak fluffed an awkward volley from an in-swinging cross.

The second half started with Slovenia on the front foot, England looking lost in possession and confused in defence. Iličić had a commanding display in the midfield despite not featuring regularly for his club side in the German second division. In the early throws of the second half, Slovenia looked as though they would push through and score.

However, England reasserted some of their dominance with a change of personnel in the midfield. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain making way for the out of favour Manchester United midfielder Jesse Lingard.

Moving into the centre, Lingard looked to connect the midfield and attack more successfully. During a 5-minute flurry following the substitution England managed to fashion a number of chances.

Lingard at the heart of them.

The 63rd minute saw Rashford one on one with Jan Oblak. But the United man picked the wrong option in front of goal, attempting to chip the Atletico goalie rather than finishing in a more sensible manner.

Raheem Sterling came close two minutes later, with a calm finish cleared off the line by a brave Slovenian defender. While Harry Kane snapped at an attempt in the 67th minute, poking it just wide.

The game soon reverted to its familiar flows only to be punctuated with occasional Slovenian counter attacks and a rogue pitch invader. In the end, Slovenia’s bullish defensive display worked against them. The cumulation of their game-breaking fouls created 6 minutes of added time in which they conceded.

A need for improvement

Once again England fans had to wait until late for their team to put the game to bed. The win marking an end to a hard fought qualification campaign with very little to be excited about.

Too many England games in recent years have been an effort to watch and have created an aura of apathy and pessimism around the national side.

Games like this do nothing to show things are about to change. Fans will need to see a marked improvement over the coming months if they are to be excited for the World Cup in Russia next year.