England needed a second half penalty from Wayne Rooney to secure a 1-0 win over Norway at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday night.
The Three Lions began life without influential midfielders Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard, who retired from international football, with Roy Hodgson starting with Raheem Sterling, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jack Wilshere.
The first chance of the half fell to the home side, as Phil Jones headed wide of the mark, after getting on the end of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s corner.
Norway came close to opening the scoring in the 21st minute as Tarik Elyounoussi’s effort from distance forced Joe Hart into a fine save.
Daniel Sturridge came close minutes later, but his effort from inside the area flew just over the crossbar after being teed up Raheem Sterling.
England were finding it tough to break the Norwegian’s stubborn defence and were restricted long range efforts, as defender Gary Cahill fired wide to the left of the upright in the 30th minute.
It was the Norway who enjoyed the better start to the second half, and they nearly took the lead in the50th minute, as Joshua King’s header was saved by Hart.
England eventually took the lead in the 68th minute, as Rooney converted from the penalty spot, after Sterling had been brought down in the area.
Danny Welbeck nearly doubled the home side’s lead minutes after coming on, but his shot from inside the area forced Orjan Nyland into a fine save.
Jones had another chance double England’s advantage in the 77th minute but the defender failed to steer his header on target.
The visitors never threatened in the final stages of the half, as Hodgson’s men managed to see out the rest of the game.