Reports from England's final two games at the Euro Championship.
By James Watkins
England 0-1 Spain
30 September 2011
The England Blind Futsal Team’s run in the IBSA European Championships came to an end with a bitter semi-final defeat through a last minute conceded goal to rivals Spain.
Despite facing a hugely experienced Spanish side, England’s mix of fledgling and experienced stars matched their opponents for the majority of the game. Positive appearances from Darren Harris, David Clarke and Keryn Seal ensured early Spanish pressure did not threaten the English goal. In attack, David Clarke forced a save form the Spanish ‘keeper before striking the post moments later. On the Spanish counter attack, Dan James in the English goal saved a miss hit strike with an outstretched leg. At half time, the score remained deadlocked at 0-0.
The second half was an equally balanced affair. England had the chance to take the lead as Dan English broke free with a positive run. The young attacker drove forward but shot wide of the Spanish goal. Harris and Seal continued to defend well and Clarke continued to look sharp in attack. As the game continued England looked the more likely winners. However, and as extra time loomed, England let their defences drop and conceded with 57 seconds left on the clock. England would have to compete for third place against the losers of the other semi final Turkey.England 4-1 Turkey
1 October 2011
Despite semi-final disappointment against Spain, England ended their IBSA European Championship campaign on high with a positive 4-1 victory against Turkey to secure third place and the bronze medal.
Following a goalless first half, the game came to life in the second period with an excellent run and strike from the inform Darren Harris to open the scoring. Turkey equalised quickly before captain and striker David Clarke came to the rescue with a fantastic individual goal to restore the Three Lions’ lead. Clarke scored his second from the eight metre spot before completing a first class hatrick to round off the comprehensive victory and to also secure the ‘Golden Boot’ for the tournament’s highest scorer with six strikes.