VIDEO: Eastick pleased to emerge unscathed
Friday, 05 August, 2011
Head Coach believes his players deserve to progress in World Cup.
By Nicholas Veevers in Cartagena
Click here to watch FATV's interview with Brian after the game.
England U20s Head Coach Brian Eastick saw his side round off their World Cup group games with a third successive draw on Thursday, as they shared a 0-0 scoreline with Mexico in Cartagena.
The result means that Eastick and his players must now wait and see the outcome of the other remaining World Cup games over the course of Friday and Saturday before they know if they have a place in the Second Round confirmed.
But given the performances and opposition they have faced in Group F over the last six days, Eastick feels that his players fully deserve a place in the knock-out stages.
"I would be disappointed for the players more than anybody if we don't go through to the next round," admitted Eastick after the game.
"For a side that was thrown together three weeks ago, they have worked so hard to come through what I believe was the toughest group in the competition unbeaten.
"We might not have scored any goals, but we've had chances in all of the games and I feel as though we have played well enough over the course of the three matches to deserve a place in the last 16.
"We weren't at our best today and I thought we were poor in the first half particularly but with the heat and humidity out there, it was always going to be very hard for us against a good Mexico side.
"Jack Butland saved the penalty and made another very good save to keep us level at half-time, but their 'keeper also made an excellent save from Callum McManaman's volley in the second half."
It has been a hard week for the squad, with three games in five days as well as the upheavel of moving base from Medellin to Cartagena inbetween games, so Eastick revealed his players will be given the chance to recover somewhat before they learn what the next step is to be.
With the Second Round games taking place next Tuesday and Wednesday should England qualify, it gives the group an opportunity to recharge the batteries a little and then begin preparations again.
"The players will be able to rest and recover now, there will be a pool recovery for them in the morning and some more work for those who haven't played but we will allow them to chill out a little because these last two games have taken a lot out of them," revealed Eastick.
"You must remember that it's still pre-season for all of them, so to come out here and play in these conditions against three good teams without defeat is a great achievement for them and another step on their learning curve."