Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling ended his 1,102-day international goal drought with a brace against Spain in the Nations League.
Prior to finding the net in the 16th minute in Seville the 23-year-old’s last goal in an England shirt had been five minutes from the end of a Euro 2016 qualifier against Estonia in October 2015.
Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at that barren spell.
Minutes played: 193
Sterling started England’s first two games but was withdrawn at half-time against Wales, along with Harry Kane – their replacements, Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge, scored England’s goals. Sterling sat out the final group game against Slovakia and though he won a penalty against Iceland in the last 16, England suffered an embarrassing exit.
World Cup qualifying
Minutes played: 365
England eased through their group but Sterling’s campaign was perhaps summed up by the opening game, when he was substituted before Adam Lallana’s late winner saw off Slovakia. He did,though, set up Jermain Defoe’s opener against Lithuania and Kane’s late equaliser away to Scotland.
World Cup 2018
Minutes played: 455
Sterling played his part in a vibrant young England team, and was integral to Jesse Lingard’s fine goal against Panama, but his performances were criticised in some quarters for not easing the goalscoring burden on captain Kane.
Minutes played: 717
The theme has been constant throughout England’s friendlies over the last three years, with Sterling frequently creating for others but unable to find a cutting edge of his own in front of goal.
Minutes played: 93 minutes
Sterling endured a goalless start to his Nations League debut, being replaced by Jadon Sancho after 78 minutes in Croatia. However, his long wait for an England goal was finally ended in the 16th minute of the game against Spain in Seville when he converted Harry Kane’s pass, before repeating the feat 22 minutes later for his second in the 3-2 victory.
(Minutes played do not include stoppage time)