Highlights: England beat Nigeria 2-1 in World Cup warm-up
England's World Cup preparations got off to a positive start thanks to a 2-1 win over Nigeria at Wembley.
Gareth Southgate handed starting chances to goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and wing-back Ashley Young, while Kyle Walker started as part of a back three.
England made all the early running and they had created a succession of chances even before Gary Cahill set fans celebrating.
Cahill, making his first England appearance since October, started in a three-man defence alongside Manchester City pair John Stones and Kyle Walker.
The Chelsea defender marked his recall into both the squad and the starting line-up by heading England in front with less than seven minutes on the clock.
Kieran Trippier's free-kick was pushed behind by Super Eagles goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, with the Tottenham full-back putting the resulting corner onto the head of Cahill, who did the rest.
Nigeria's teenage goalkeeper fumbled a cross before doing well to close down Sterling, who lofted an effort wide of a post with England well and truly in control.
Ashley Young, looking to secure a starting place in Russia, almost added a second but, after a quick exchange of passes with Sterling, the Manchester United man saw his close-range effort blocked by Bryan Idowu.
Sterling was seeing plenty of the ball without making the most of it, breaking the offside trap before wasting the cross and then firing over when well-placed.
But he did lay on the pass for captain Harry Kane to double England's lead, Uzoho again not covering himself in glory as the Tottenham striker's shot flashed under his body.
Southgate resisted the temptation to make changes at the interval, while Nigeria made four changes.
It was Arsenal winger Alex Iwobi who reduced the deficit, firing home from just inside the box after Odion Ighalo had hit a post.
Sterling courted controversy as he was rightly booked for simulation by Italian referee Marco Guida, hitting the ground all too easily as Uzoho came off his line to claim the ball.
Southgate made his first changes on the other side of the hour mark, introducing Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Danny Rose with Manchester United pair Jesse Lingard and Young making way.
He then turned to Danny Welbeck and Marcus Rashford in an attempt to settle the contest, with captain Kane and Sterling coming off.
Those changes seemed to take the sting out of Nigeria, the Super Eagles having been on the front foot since Iwobi's strike.
Welbeck burst through on goal only to be well stopped, with Fabian Delph also picking up his first cap in 932 days as a late replacement for Dele Alli.
But there were no more goalscoring opportunities as England's World Cup warm-up began in a somewhat unconvincing manner.
Kane admitted he feels back to his best after scoring in the 2-1 victory against Nigeria at Wembley.
"It was a good win against a tough side," he told ITV. "The first half we were excellent and moved the ball quickly.
"The second we had trouble, they changed their formation. We got used to it and saw the game out well.
"I feel at my best, really good. It's always great to score. I'm looking forward to the game on Thursday (against Costa Rica). It will be another tough one."