Kamil Glik's equaliser cancels out Wayne Rooney's first-half goal in the delayed fixture in Warsaw
Preamble: We've all been there. You're off out, perhaps to the shops, perhaps to the disco, perhaps round to your nan's for tea, and your favourite (or, if things are a little desperate, only) trousers are on the washing line. And they're sodden.
It was a misjudgment, a miscalculation, a straight-up-and-down honest-to-goodness mistake. And now you're in trouble. The hairdryer does nothing more than warming up the wet. The radiator isn't much better. Going outside and wanging them around your head is as tiring as it is ineffective.
Spare a thought then for the groundsmen and women in Warsaw, charged with drying out a pitch that less than 24 hours ago was as wet as a sardine's bikini. You sense that what they'll do is exactly what anyone would do when faced with the above trouser (or underpants) issue: leave it as long as you can then going for it anyway knowing that it's going to be damp and unpleasant at first but hoping that you'll get used to it after a while.
Roofwatch: The sun is now out in Warsaw so the roof, predictably, is now closed and will remain so during the game. It was finally closed late last night, then reopened this morning in an attempt to help the pitch dry, before being closed for good early this afternoon. There's no rain forecast for today, but you imagine that even if record temperatures were predicted they'd keep the damn thing shut. You know, just in case.
Those at the ground seem hopeful that there'll be no further delays to proceedings – pictures from the national stadium this afternoon suggest the surface is playable, but likely to cut up like a Sunday league bog as the game goes on. So, hopefully, we'll be able to concentrate on a match that has gathered a little more edge to it following events in Ukraine last night. There's Montenegrin cat amongst the Polish and England pigeons – Branko Brnovic's team, having already suggested it a home draw against the Poles, proved in no uncertain terms that they're genuine contenders for qualification with their victory in Kiev. Two draws against England in Euro 2012 qualifying indicate they'll be no pushover for Roy Hodgson's side either. Defeat today for the visitors will leave things a little too tight for comfort at the top of Group H.
Team news: Roy Hodgson said as the rain came down last night that he'd stick with the same XI for the rearranged game, so barring some sneaky last-minute changes we're expecting his side to line up like this: Hart; Johnson, Jagielka, Lescott, Cole; Milner, Gerrard, Carrick, Cleverley; Rooney, Defoe.
There are a few pictures dropping in on the wires now. Over in Warsaw we've gone from this:
And from this:
The teams are in. England, as expected, are unchanged from yesterday's lineup:
Poland: Tyton, Piszczek, Wasilewski, Glik, Wawrzyniak, Krychowiak, Polanski, Wszolek, Grosicki, Obraniak, Lewandowski.
England: Hart, Johnson, Jagielka, Lescott, Cole, Milner, Gerrard, Carrick, Cleverley, Rooney, Defoe.
Referee: G Rocchi (It)
-50 min: Alan Titchmarsh is currently interviewing Pat Butcher on a set stolen from a Milton Keynes disco with delusions of grandeur.
-48 min: Now there's a dog on a bathmat and a lady in a zed-bed. If I had the volume turned up I might have a vague idea what's going on. But …
Never let it be said that we don't focus on the big issues of the day. "I'm advised by my Japanese speaking daughter that Mount Fujisan means Mount Fuji Mountain," writes Mark Judd. "You can go with Mount Fuji or Fujisan."
Some good news for the fans left out of pocket after Tuesday night's debacle. This from the Press Association:
England's players are to part-fund a £50,000 money-back scheme for fans affected by last night's World Cup postponement in Warsaw.
Whilst the Polish Football Federation have already confirmed they will refund the cost of tickets for fans unable to attend this evening's match, the FA have taken it a step further.
Together with the England Footballers Foundation (EFF), they have agreed to cover the costs of tickets refunds for fans who did remain in the Polish capital.
In addition, The FA and players will invite every one of the 2,500 fans who bought tickets and travelled to the game to a special England training session at Wembley Stadium or St George's Park before the end of the season.
"Forget mount Fuji - think King Kong," writes David Gedge. "In Norway the word Kong means King, so King Kong, is really King King. If you watch the movie (old good version, not new bastardised version) they even say '..the locals call him 'Kong', when they get back to NY they decide to call him 'King Kong', making themselves look like complete idiots."
"I am also now advised that Fuji translates as 'wealthy gentlemen," writes Mark Judd. "So think of it as Mount Wealthy Gentlemen, and any connotations that might imply."
"There's a place in Cumbria called Torpenhow Hill, or Hillhillhill Hill, and I claim my five pounds," writes Joseph Bradfield.
I can't really remember how we reached this point …
"They've done a good job and the pitch is perfectly playable," says Roy Hodgson in the tunnel.
"My father," begins Louise Wright, "for reasons best left unexplored, frequently informs me that Breedon-on-the-hill (a village in Leicestershire) means Hillhill-on-the-hill (Bre being Old British for hill and don being Anglo Saxon for hill)."
"What about The Los Angeles Angels baseball team?," tweets Paul Kellington on Twitter. "Translates as 'The The Angels Angels'"
Sooooooo, Cleverley on the left then eh?
Hodgson says that he hopes his players won't be affected by the delay, but if any side are likely to get twitchy then surely it would be the hosts? Montenegro have put them under a good deal of pressure with their win in Kiev last night.
Click-clack, click-clack … the players are in the tunnel/foyer area.
Anthemwatch: You know the drill. Interestingly, a decent chunk of the Poland fans in the ground applaud the English anthem. Some great lung-grating passion from the Poland team as they belt out their own.
Peep! Right then, 20 hours after originally planned we're under way in Warsaw.
1 min: The referee crossed himself as he blew his whistle to start the game. Players do that all the time, obviously, but I've never seen it from an official before. Not sure how that bodes …
2 min: Lescott, Jagielka, Johnson, Carrick and Cole exchange passes on halfway before Milner gets to the byline and dinks a cross to Cleverley at the back post. His volley slaps off a defender and away.
3 min: Polanski looks to put Lewandowski away down the left, but Jagielka heads away.
4 min: Looks like England have settled into a 4-2-3-1, with the wide men in the three – Milner and Cleverley – sitting pretty deep. Not a million miles away from a 4-4-1-1. If you're interested in that sort of thing.
6 min: Cleverley boosts through the centre but Johnson's pass is heavier than a Volkswagen.
7 min: A loose touch from Gerrard 40 yards from his own goal allows Poland to get on the front foot. A cross from Wawrzyniak finds Grosicki free in the box but he air kicks hopelessly. Decent chance that.
9 min: Poland look fairly happy to play on the break, and they've been helped out by some sloppy England passing thus far.
11 min: Polanski goes into the book for a cynical trip on Defoe as England look to break.
12 min: Joe Hart comes to England's rescue. Piszczek is a gnat's wing away from getting on the end of Obraniak's clever inside pass, but the England goalkeeper is out quickly to smother the danger.
14 min: Wszolek goes storming down the Poland left once more – both England full-backs have come under pressure in these early exchanges, and neither has looked entirely comfortable. A Lewandowski foul ends the attack, but Poland definitely have the upper hand now.
16 min: Milner does well to retain possession but Rooney's cross is little more than a hopeful punt in the rough direction of the penalty spot.
18 min: A bit of a lull, so time for this: "If you're still interested, and I can't for the life of me think why you would be, you might like to know that many river names in the UK mean 'river'," writes Gavin Reed. "Tyne, for instance, means river, as does Avon, Mersey, Thames, and probably quite a few more. It's not limited to the UK, either. Danube means river, as does Indus, and Mississippi." Also a hat-tip to Lin Richardson, who notes that Lake Windermere means Lake Winderlake. This could run and run. But let's hope it doesn't.
19 min: Gerrard cracks into Polanski to give Poland a free-kick, 50 odd yards out …
20 min: … Lescott, like Jackie Wilson, rises highest to head clear.
22 min: Gerrard is the man trying to make England tick from deep, but surely he's the wrong one of the central pair to be orchestrating.
23 min: England get a glimmer of a soupçon of a chance on the edge of the Poland box, but Gerrard's shot is blocked and Rooney can't work space from the rebound. At the other end, Wszolek lumps a cross out of play.
24 min: "Loch Lochie in Scotland means Lake Lakey," writes Jamie Dormon. Meanwhile, Defoe is nearly in at the near post from Milner's low cross. Wasilewski does well to block, but it's a corner …
26 min: … Rooney nods down, Wasilewski heads clear. Cripes, I've had a deluge of emails (well, three) pointing out that none of the lakes in Lake District are officially called "Lake" anything (apart from Bassenthwaite Lake). Lin Richardson hang your head in shame.
27 min: Lewandowski drives into the box and sends a cross/shot zipping dangerously across the six-yard box. It ends up out for a throw in, but that was a fraught moment for England.
28 min: There's really very little buzz or zest about this England side at the moment, but I suppose you'd have to say it's not an XI designed for attacking dynamism. Still, Gerrard's won a corner …
GOAL!!! Poland 0-1 England (Rooney 31) … whipped in by Gerrard and nodded home by Rooney. It might come off the striker's shoulder about six yards out, but it loops wide of Tyton in the Poland goal.
32 min: Lewandowski again gets the ball at his feet and the bit between his teeth. His superb surge into the box isn't matched by his rather disappointing final ball. Wawrzyniak can't get on the end of it.
35 min: Cleverley scuffs a shot wide from the edge of the box after Piszczek nods away Gerrard's inswinging free-kick.
36 min: Cleverley, not for the first time, gives the ball away on halfway. Poland, not for the first time, can't make anything of it.
38 min: Cole is booked … for timewasting at a throw-in.
39 min: A Poland corner is cleared via the bonce of Rooney and the boot of Jagielka.
41 min: A few people asking if that booking for Cole is some sort of record for earliest yellow card for timewasting. Short answer: No. Long answer: this from the Knowledge:
"I'm sure your Norwegian readers will remember the World Cup qualifying match in Rotterdam between the Netherlands and Norway back in November 1972," said Bjørnar Steinbakken. "Back then, Norway seldom won more than one match in an entire season, and that was usually against Iceland. Anyway, the Norwegians were pegged back by the mighty Johan Cruyff and friends from the outset and their goalkeeper, Per Haftorsen, received a yellow card for time-wasting after only five minutes. The match ended in a 9-0 victory for the home team."
Not bad, but not the fastest, according to Ed Gilbert. "On 22 December 1979, Derby County played Liverpool and the Rams were awarded a penalty after just 20 seconds, which they scored. At the time Derby were on a downward spiral towards near-bankruptcy, Robert Maxwell and the old Third Division. Roy McFarland recognised that Derby were unlikely to win against the eventual league champions and so, with not a little humour, on getting the ball from the ensuing kick-off he hoofed the ball high into the stands; the referee was not amused and booked him. The report does not list the exact time, but it was pretty much around the two-minute mark."
42 min: Grosicki gets in behind Lescott and races on to Lewandowski's pass. The midfielder's first-time effort with the outside of his boot slams wide.
44 min: Johnson makes a vital tackle as Lewandowski pops the ball past Lescott on the break. England's midfield has been utterly absent for much of this half.
PEEP! And that's half-time. For England it's a case of scoreline good, performance not so good as Sven might have said.
The my-brain-has-melted-and-all-that-remains-is-a-puddle-that-resembles-Ready-Brek half-time email dept.
"Torpenhow hill is in Cumbria," writes Peter Taylor-Mansfield. "It's name means hillhillhill hill."
"So if none of the lakes in this so-called Lake District are actually called lakes, shouldn't it be called District?" wonders James Blanchard. "Or maybe District District..."
"There are several roads and/or streets in the UK called 'Street Lane', a couple called 'Street Road' and even one (in Nottinghamshire) called 'Street Lane Road'," writes Mark Goodge. "There's also a 'Road Lane', but not, as far as I can tell, a 'Road Street'. By contrast, there are a larger number of 'Avenue Road's, which suggests a distinct lack of originality among town planners."
"To be fair, loch lochie is really very lochish," writes Martin Utley. "One of the most lochy lochs going I'd say."
Can you sum up the England performance so far in one word? I'm going for sloppidipitous – a combination of sloppy and serendipitous. Another half like that and they've have, cliche alert, one foot at the World Cup. Well, perhaps not a whole foot. Maybe three or four toes.
PEEP! Off we go again then.
46 min: SO CLOSE! Jagielka makes a 24-carat rick from Grosicki's cross. His air-kick almost drops to a Poland shirt but Johnson does superbly to poke away the danger.
48 min: Johnson gets caught underneath Obreniak's pass and Wszolek is in behind on the Poland right. His cross causes panic on the streets of London, Dublin, Dundee, Humberside and the England box. But Cleverley makes the clearance.
50 min: Obraniak stings Hart's palms with a long ranger. Poland very much on the front foot here.
51 min: Wasilewski does well to cut out a Rooney cross that was arrowing towards the loitering Defoe. Poland haven't looked at all solid at the back, though you'd hardly notice because of the rarity of England attacks.
53 min: Piszczek thunders down the right, but his cross is tapped gently to Hart by Polanski.
55 min: Another England long ball drifts out of play. They've had more hopeful punts this evening than a useless professional gambler.
57 min: "The Nordic name Grinhilde or Grunhilde derives from one Norse word meaning battle and one Germanic word meaning battle," writes Ryan McDermott. "Just imagine a Meet the Norse Parents: this is my new girlfriend Battle-Battle."
58 min: Obraniak's goalbound shot strikes Glen Johnson. Rooney had skewed a clearance to spark another attack. England doing nothing more than surviving now.
59 min: Piszczek slaps a half-volley into the side-netting. Equaliser is on its way. "Since I'm not watching, but following you surreptitiously while at work, can you comment on the state of the pitch so far?" asks Tracy Mohr. I can indeed: it's fine, if a little spongy and slow, and it's not cutting up particularly badly at all.
61 min: Wszolek just about gets enough of the ball to prevent the referee from awarding a penalty as Johnson tumbles in the area.
62 min: Wszolek goes off to be replaces by Mierzejewski. "According to the team sheet Michael Carrick is playing," writes Chris Surgenor. "Did he go off at some stage and I missed it?" Yes, it's fair to say he's been anonymous.
64 min: Glik goes into the book for a handball right on the edge of right edge of the area. Dangerous free-kick this …
65 min: … whipped in by Gerrard and Defoe must score … but doesn't. His close range volley is skewed back across the area with the goal more or less at his mercy.
66 min: Defoe off, Welbeck on.
68 min: Ever since I predicted an imminent equaliser 10 minutes ago, Poland have gone into their shells. You're welcome, Roy.
69 min: Milner charges through on the break and feeds Welbeck who is clean through. Tyton just gets there first, but the danger is far from over. Welbeck pulls the ball back to Rooney but his left-footed shot is abysmal, scooped over the bar from 10 yards.
GOAL!!! Poland 1-1 England (Glik, 70) Oh, Joe Hart. Obraniak curls in a corner. Hart comes flying out like Superman's lairy cousin, arrives in a different postcode to the ball, and Glik rises higher than Lescott to head home the equaliser.
71 min: Re 68 mins: I'm sorry, Roy.
72 min: Poland thoroughly deserve to be level here. Now do they stick or twist? Rooney trudges off to be replaced by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
74 min: Jagielka ends Lewandowski's charge and on the break Oxlade-Chamberlain does very well to win a corner …
75 min: … Cleverley dinks it in, Poland clear … and for once don't come charging away with the ball. The home fans clearly want them to push on for a winner, but I'm not sure the team have got that in mind.
76 min: "Swedes are particularly inspired when it comes to place-names," writes Julian Menz. "There is a village in Sweden called Village."
77 min: For the umpteenth time Piszczek gets in behind Cole. The full-back really hasn't had adequate support from first Cleverley, then Rooney and now Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. From the resultant corner, Hart flaps but is fouled.
79 min: Cole blocks Grosicki's run. Corner …
80 min: … Glik again gets highest, but this time powers his header over the bar.
81 min: I think this next email might have tipped me over the edge. "Green Street Green Road is the name of a street near Dartford, Kent," writes Rebecca Brown. "Green Street Green is the village green at the end of Green Street, and Green Street Green Road is the road leading to the green. That'll ready-brek your brain!"
82 min: Grosicki comes off to be replaced by Arkadiusz Milek, the leading scorer in the Polish league this season
84 min: Milner's cross is glanced on by Welbeck, but its glanced wide. Not even a half-chance really, more a quarter-chance, but that was a decent effort from the Manchester United youngster.
86 min: Vital claim by Titov after perhaps England's best passing move of the game. Johnson, Gerrard and then Milner combine, with the latter sending a low cross fizzing into the six-yard box. The keeper does very well to get down to save.
87 min: Mierzejewski wins a corner, to be taken by Obraniak …
89 min: … powered away by Lescott. And Hart claims the ball as it is sent optimistically back into that most hallowed of places, the mixer.
90 min: Obraniak is replaced by Borysiuk, a move that suggests Poland have settled for this.
90+1 min: There'll be a minimum of three added minutes.
90+2 min: "English goalkeeping - the wind that blows the dark clouds over Scottish football away," writes Alistair Elder. "Well, a bit."
PEEP! PEEEP!! PEEEEEEEP!!!
Well, England will be happy enough with the result, if no one could be particularly impressed with the performance. Notably, there was a marked improvement once Rooney and Defoe were replaced by Oxlade-Chamberlain and Welbeck.
Right, that's it from me. Thanks for your many (many) emails about Lake Windermere, Bassenthwaite Lake, Road Street, Town Town, Eric Djemba-Djemba and the many (many) others. Sorry I could not use them all. Stick around on site for all the reaction and news from Warsaw – it'll all be here soon enough – but from me, cheerio!