James Milner believes the Young Lions need not fear anyone as they look towards the play-offs.
UEFA European U21 Championship Group 3 Qualifier
7.45pm, Friday 5 September 2008
match programme online
England's most capped player at Under-21 level, James Milner, believes Stuart Pearce's side need not fear anyone as he and his Aston Villa team-mate Gabriel Agbonlahor ensured a 2-0 win over Portugal at Wembley.
Milner slotted home a penalty on the stroke of half-time, before his new club colleague Agbonlahor ensured Pearce's Young Lions extended their lengthy unbeaten run ahead of the European Under-21 Championship qualifying play-off next month.
And after another surefooted performance, Milner believes England can afford to feel confident whoever they are drawn against on present form.
"We went close last time so I hope we can do even better next time," he said.
"You have to go a long way back to find the last time we were beaten inside 90 minutes.
"We've accomplished the first step, which was to qualify top of the group, and if we've managed to put out a top quality side like Portugal along the way then it's an extra bonus.
"We have a sound defensive record and it's a good habit to get into. We defend from the front with Gabby leading the way. We all put a good shift in and a clean sheet is often the end result."
1 Joe Hart, 2 Martin Cranie, 3 Andrew Taylor, 4 Fabrice Muamba (15 Lee Cattermole, 56), 5 Steven Taylor (c), 6 Michael Mancienne, 7 James Milner, 8 Tom Huddlestone, 9 Gabriel Agbonlahor (18 Fraizer Campbell, 76), 10 Mark Noble, 11 Adam Johnson (16 Michael Kightly, 86)
Substitutes 13 Tom Heaton, 12 Jamie O'Hara, 14 Richard Stearman, 17 Aaron Lennon
Coach Stuart Pearce
12 Rui Patrício, 3 Nuno André Coelho, 5 Gonçalo Brandão, 6 Paulo Machado (15 Stélvio Cruz), 7 Vieirinha (18 Daniel Candeias), 8 Manuel Fernandes (c), 10 Miguel Veloso, 13 Vasco Fernandes, 14 Bruno Pereirinha, 16 Bruno Gama (9 João Moreira, 46), 17 Ricardo Vaz Té
Substitutes 1 Ricardo Batista, 2 Hugo Lopes, 4 Daniel Carriço, 11 Helder Barbosa
Coach Rui Caçador
Referee Gianluca Rocchi (ITA)
Assistant Referees Paolo Calcagno (ITA) and Stefano Papi (ITA)
Fourth official Nicola Stefanini (ITA)
England White shirts, Blue shorts, White socks
Portugal Red shirts, Red shorts, Red socks