By Nicholas Veevers
Tuesday, 08 November, 2011
Midfielder Nico Yennaris ready to take on Denmark in Brighton this Thursday.
England U19s make their return to home soil on Thursday evening when they face Denmark at Brighton & Hove Albion's Amex Stadium and midfielder Nico Yennaris is hoping that their unbeaten run can continue in front of a sell-out crowd.
Noel Blake's squad have played four games so far this campaign, starting with a draw in Holland in September and then winning the Limoges Tournament in France last month where they played a further three matches against the hosts, Ukraine and Portugal.
Now the Danes lie in wait for them on the south coast and Arsenal ace Yennaris believes that their experiences over the last two months can only help them ahead of their homecoming.
"It was a good exercise for us in France, because there were a lot of games in a short space of time, so whilst it was tiring, that is good experience for us ahead of the Qualifiers," he said.
"France were a very good team, Ukraine were a hard team to play against and Portugal were decent too. We were a little unlucky not to beat France in the first game, we should’ve won that but with them being the host nation a few of the refereeing decisions went their way and we had to settle for the draw."
This particular year group of players is also seen by many as one of the strongest that England have produced in a number of years, with many of the squad having been part of the U17 team which became European Champions in 2010 and Yennaris knows that all involved have to keep playing at the highest level possible to remain in Blake's thoughts.
"It’s a big year group and there are a lot of players who can still come into it," he added. "A few of the boys in the squad are pushing for the first teams at their clubs now as well, so there is a lot of competition.
"I've been picked a few times now, so that's great for me and I must be doing the right things, so I just need to keep going."
Yennaris was recently given his full debut for Arsenal in their League Cup tie with Bolton Wanderers at the Emirates Stadium and he's now preparing to run out in front of another sizeable audience with over 20,000 fans expected at the Amex Stadium and the game also being screened live on FATV.
"I was surprised when I read that there was something like 20,000 tickets sold, so it will be great for the team and it should be a good night hopefully," he said.
"It’s great that it’s going out live too, as the more people who can support and get behind us, the better it is for the team."
You can read the full interview with Nico in the match programme for the game which will be available online soon.