Do they not like that?
Who said that English football fans are losing interest? A 90,000 sell-out at Wembley against the join-worst ranked team in international football suggests that they are wrong. A Friday night stroll is expected but still they come from far and wide.
Perhaps the fans have come to relive the glory days of Graham Taylor, when San Marino were put to the sword, both home and away, even though the memories will always be of Stuart Pearce's stumble and Davide Gualtieri's first minute finish in Bologna in the winter of 1993.
Earlier that year, the first of the matches in qualifying for USA '94 was played in front of a piddling 51,154 at Wembley, with England's line-up looking rather tasty featuring Paul Gascoigne, David Platt, John Barnes and Les Ferdinand. David Platt got four goals that night, in a 6-0 win, at a time when he was often his nation's chief goal threat.
Platt the player, years before he became Roberto Mancini's right-hand man, often got himself into the type of positions in which Tom Cleverley got himself into during England's last outing, the poorly received 1-1 draw with Ukraine. That night, Cleverley missed two golden chances, and a potentially costly draw put early pressure on England's hopes of basking in Rio sunshine. Roy Hodgson's honeymoon, such as it was, is almost over, and his confusing post-match comments had the adverse effect to that he expected.
"I am not prepared to accept this wasn't a great performance," he said then. Nothing less than heavy victory is acceptable on Friday.
Since then, Cleverley has located a scoring touch, though so far exclusively against Newcastle United. Nevertheless, he has played with the confidence of a man now trusted by his club manager and international coach. The absence of Frank Lampard surely places Cleverley in the starting line-up though his new captain, expectant father Wayne Rooney, may now see himself as a midfielder too. Michael Carrick may complete an all-Manchester United midfield.
In truth, though, Hodgson could field just about any team of English players and expect to beat San Marino, such is their lack of personnel. A team who labels its sole win against the mighty Liechtenstein - and that was in 2004 - is nothing less than cannon fodder. A cricket score is expected against a team who conceded 52 unanswered goals in singularly failing to qualify for Euro 2012. Sammarinese coach Giampaolo Mazza may be Europe's longest-serving national coach, having been in charge since 1998, but the standards expected of him are rather different to those that 90,000 - give or take a handful of visitors from the Most Serene Republic of San Marino - will demand from Hodgson and his men.
England player to watch - Wayne Rooney From flabby forward with a gashed leg to mean, lean, midfield machine, tabloid pariah to father of the year potential, the transformation of Wayne Rooney, this time in just over six weeks, has been rapid in a long career of ups and downs. Bestowed as captain for the day in the absence of Steven Gerrard, will he wear the responsibility well?
San Marino player to watch - Andy Selva That famous night against Liechtenstein saw Selva as the hero, when he grabbed the winning goal. If Sammarinese football has a hall of fame, then Selva is its all-time MVP. For a team that rarely scores, here is a man with an admirable strike rate. Eight goals in 55 is not bad at all, in fact. He is 36 years old now and his career has ebbed into Italy's Serie D. Will San Marino ever see his like again when he does hang up his boots?
Key Battle - Jermain Defoe v Aldo Simoncini Defoe is a player who goes through hot streaks and this is one of them. He usually goes through them when he has the faith of his manager, and as with Cleverley, enjoys the current support of Hodgson and indeed Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas. He also likes a shot or two and so goalkeeper Aldo Simoncini can expect his hands to be warmed by some rockets. Or not, as the case may be. In San Marino's last qualifier, against Montenegro, he may have saved ten shots, but let in six goals.
Trivia: Straight off Wikipedia but impressive nonetheless: "San Marino is the oldest surviving sovereign state and constitutional republic in the world, as the continuation of the monastic community founded on September 3, 301, by stonecutter Marinus of Rab."
Stats: San Marino share the coveted joint-bottom spot of FIFA's ranking of 201st with both Bhutan and the Turks & Caicos Islands.
Odds: England are 1.01 to win at bet365, which is 100/1 if you are so inclined. San Marino are 126/1, and a draw is 25/1. A repeat of that 6-0 in 1992 is a mere 5/1.
Prediction: An England win.