Stuart Pearce insists his side still have it all to do to qualify for the 2009 Euro's despite a 3-2 defeat of Wales.
Wales 2-3 England
2009 UEFA European Under-21 Championship Play-Off First Leg
7.45pm, Friday 10 October 2008
Ninian Park, Cardiff City FC
Tickets will be available at Villa Park on the night from 6.15pm. Cash bookings only.
England Under-21 Head Coach Stuart Pearce insists his side still have it all to do in order to qualify for the 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, despite leaving Cardiff with a hard-earned 3-2 victory over a dogged Wales outfit.
The Three Lions found themselves a goal down after just 13 minutes, when Simon Church took advantage of an unfortunate Stephen Taylor ricochet to slot Wales into the lead.
He scored his second just before half-time after Middlesbrough duo David Wheater and Adam Johnson had put England into a 2-1 lead.
However, a deft flick from Gabriel Agbonlahor in the 62nd minute restored The Three Lions' one-goal advantage, which they will take into Tuesday's second leg at Villa Park.
Despite the lead, Pearce knows his side need to improve on this performance if they are to participate in the Euro's next summer.
"We gifted a couple of opportunites to Wales and we'll need to improve on that, but to score three goals on our travels was pleasing," he reflected.
"I'm happy with parts [of England's performance] and not happy with other parts. It was a very open game that we'll take a lot of positives out of. Now we have to back that up with a win at Villa Park," he continued.
"We will only get through if we put enough hard work in and if we take our opportunities - which we did tonight. The players are pleased but they're also disappointed, which is a good sign for me."
1 Owain Fon Williams, 2 Neal Eardley, 3 Rhoys Wiggins, 4 Jack Collison, 5 Darcy Blake, 7 Nicky Adams (17 Joe Allen, 59), 8 Andy King, 9 Simon Church, 10 Aaron Ramsey, 11 Shaun MacDonald (16 Jonathan Brown, 76), 15 Lewin Nyatanga
Simon Church 13, 45
Subs: 6 Joe Jacobson, 12 Rhys Taylor, 13 Lloyd James, 14 Mike Williams, 18 Marc Williams
1 Joe Hart, 2 David Wheater, 3 Jamie O’Hara, 4 Lee Cattermole, 5 Steven Taylor, 6 Michael Mancienne, 7 James Milner, 8 Tom Huddlestone, 9 Gabby Agbonlahor (16 Fraizer Campbell, 76), 10 Mark Noble, 11 Adam Johnson,
David Wheater 19, Adam Johnson 35, Gabriel Agbonlahor 62
Subs: 12 Richard Stearman, 13 Tom Heaton, 14 Jack Cork, 15 Ryan Bertrand, 17 Matt Derbyshire, 18 Sylvan Ebanks-Blake
Pavel Cristian Balaj