Yesterday afternoon, with the international scene bursting into life, I took the opportunity to see how England performed against Nigeria, in a friendly at Wembley Stadium.
Primarily, my reasoning being to see how the Chelsea contingent on show fared, what with Gary Cahill starting for England and Victor Moses being in the Nigerian starting eleven, there was also the bonus of the Chelsea legend John Obi Mikel in the Nigerian eleven and also the prospect of Ruben Loftus-Cheek coming off the bench to shine for Gareth Southgate’s side.
But, after enjoying the spectacle of seeing Gary Cahill open the scoring for England, with a stunning header from a corner, my interest, for one reason or another, started to wane.
Instead, my mind started to wander, and I found myself thinking which, if they were available and money was no object, three of the England side I’d like to see in the Chelsea side.
Taking a deep breath, I had to admit that my first choice would be Harry Kane. Okay, I know he plays for Tottenham Hotspur, but he just has something about him, ungainly to watch at times but he just has that wonderful knack of scoring.
My second choice would be the young goalkeeper Jordan Pickford. The youngster, currently on the books of Everton, has a wonderful future ahead of him and his signing would solve the green jersey situation at Chelsea, allowing Thibaut Courtois to make a return to his beloved Spain.
My third choice, well, is where I ran into a brick wall, looking at the attributes of those on show, I struggled to find one that impressed me enough to make me want to see him become a Chelsea player.
Now it could be me being picky but, more realistically, it’s an indication of the state of the national side who, after taking a 2-0 lead, were comfortably out-worked by Nigeria in the second-half and grateful to win the game 2-1.
As for the Chelsea contingent, Cahill’s goal and capable defending saw him awarded the man-of-the-match award, Moses looked nothing like the player who marauds down the flank at Stamford Bridge, Loftus-Cheek did get some minutes as a substitute and impressed.
As for the legend that is Mikel, he did his best to push the Nigerian side on but his increasing years have seen his powers start to diminish.