Sunday, May 30, 2010

Congratulations to England's Under-17's - UEFA European Champions 2010.

England skipper Conor Coady lifts the the European Championship trophy

England's Under-17's were today crowned European Football Champions for the first time, after a 2-1 victory over their Spanish counterparts in Liechtenstein.

Spain, Under-17 champions twice in the last three years dominated opening proceedings and took the lead in the 22nd minute at the Rheinpark Stadium.

England rallied and were level just eight minutes later when Liverpool's Andre Wisdom headed Josh McEachran's corner past Spanish keeper Adrian Ortolá.

Ipswich forward Connor Wickham was in outstanding form and gave England the lead after 42 minutes, beating three defenders as he cut into the box before giving Ortolá no chance with a cool finish.

Spain were pushing hard to equalise, but tournament top scorer Paco was frustrated in his attempt to add to his six goals.

Wickham could have put his side even further ahead in the second half, but there were no further goals as England held on for a first age-group title since England hosted and won the UEFA Under-18 European Championships in 1993.

England manager John Peacock said afterwards: "It means a lot to the English game. We've obviously got our critics that we are not producing players. We have produced many, many good players from this tournament, we are producing good players back in England. What is missing was a final where we could put our name to a trophy, hopefully we won't have to wait 17 years for another one."

Now can the England senior squad go on and lift the World Cup in South Africa this summer, and put English football firmly back on the map?

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