All square in the Algarve
Sunday, 27 February, 2011
Alex Henshall and Adam Jackson score in 2-2 draw with Portugal.
England U17s completed their Algarve Tournament campaign with a 2-2 draw against Portugal.
Their final match before next month’s UEFA European U17 Championship Elite Round qualifiers was truly a game of two halves, as John Peacock’s young side took an early two-goal lead, but injuries to goalscorer Adam Jackson and John Lundstram and a red card for Jack Dunn disrupted England’s rhythm somewhat and the host nation capitalised after the break.
Alex Henshall gave England the lead on 16 minutes and Jackson doubled the advantage just two minutes later. The Young Lions were looking comfortable but when Peacock was forced into those two first-half changes Portugal seized the initiative and eventually earned a draw in the second half, with the equaliser coming in injury time.
This result rounds off England’s stay in the Algarve and comes after a 1-1 draw with Romania on Thursday and a 3-1 defeat to Germany 24 hours later.
They must now re-focus for the main challenge ahead; three European Championship qualifiers in March, against Northern Ireland, Belgium and Spain, knowing only the top-placed side in Group Five will qualify for the Finals.
England are the reigning European U17 champions.
1 Ben Garrett (13 Tyrel Belford, 41), 2 Jordan Cousins (C) (12 Courtney Meppen Walters, 46), 3 Matty Regan, 6 Adam Jackson (5 Sam Magri, 21), 7 Nathan Redmond (10 Blair Turgott, 41), 8 Max Clayton (18 Cauley Woodrow, 56), 9 Zak Ansah, 11 Alex Henshall (19 Tyler Blackett, 76), 14 George Evans, 16 John Lundstram (20 James Ward Prowse, 32), 17 Adil Nabi (15 Jack Dunn, 41)
Substitutes not used 4 Robbie Cotton