The Young Lions will be aiming for victory against Belarus on Saturday to seal their Championship spot.
UEFA European U19 Championship Elite Round
Traktor Stadium, Minsk
2pm, Saturday 31 May
England U19s are just one game away from confirming their attendance at this summer’s UEFA U19 European Championships in the Czech Republic and Head Coach Brian Eastick is urging his squad to remain focused on their goal.
The Young Lions know that if they can win, or avoid defeat against Belarus on Saturday afternoon, they will be making the trip to the Czech Republic in July and Eastick insists that his team will be approaching the game with the intention of winning.
Having been in Belarus all week for the Elite Qualifying round, England have so far picked up two victories against Poland and Serbia, but now they will face the hosts who also know that a win for them will be enough to qualify.
A Belarus victory would see the teams finish the group level on points, but it would be decided on how the teams fared ‘head-to-head’ to decide who will partake in the Championships.
With a sizeable crowd expected for the game at the Traktor Stadium in Minsk and the match being screened live on local television, there will be no doubting the size of the occasion but Eastick knows that this is all part of the players’ learning curve.
“This is what tournament football is all about and it will be good for the players to play in a game like this,” he said.
“We know it’s going to be a difficult game to finish with. It’s being played in a new stadium where we haven’t played at yet, there will be a big crowd and this is a massive game for Belarus.
“The lads have learnt a lot from being away together this week and we now need to show a good temperament and attitude to this match.”
Whilst Eastick knows that a draw will be good enough to see England through, he is aiming to complete a 100 per cent record of three wins from the group to seal qualification in style.
“We will be going into the game looking to win it, as we have in the previous two games,” he added.
“There won’t be any settling for a draw, as we know that Belarus are a decent team and can cause us problems.
“We saw them beat Poland on Thursday and they played well there.
“It’s now down to a winner-takes-all situation and we know that we’ll have to work really hard.
“It will be very difficult for the lads if we don’t go through, but that’s tournament football so we have to remain focused.”