Stuart Pearce hails his young Lions after their seventh successive victory and clean sheet
England 4-0 Sweden
An Under-21 International
Banks’s Stadium, Walsall FC
7.30pm, Tuesday 5 February 2013
Stuart Pearce praised his England Under-21s side after they extended their impressive run to a record seven consecutive wins.
A brace from Blackpool winger Tom Ince and one apiece from Liverpool's Jonjo Shelvey and Sunderland's Connor Wickham gave England a 4-0 win over Sweden.
And like Pearce, the 9000 fans who braved the wet and cold in Walsall would have been impressed with what they saw.
It was a sleek performance, despite the conditions, and as they build-up to an important summer at the European Championship, Pearce just can't wait to get going again.
"I just wish we were meeting up again tomorrow to prepare for another game," Pearce said.
"It's a great achievement, seven clean sheets on the trot, and that's credit to the lads.
"It couldn't have been a better way to get our preparations under way. It was beyond my expectations how well they gelled with each other.
"They passed the ball fantastically well, they had a real enthusiasm to stop the opposition getting efforts at our goal. Winning the game 4-0 was a real bonus.
"I think right across the squad, the way they've come together straight away for this new calendar year has been outstanding for us.
"It's our first stepping stone on building for the tournament in the summer."
When England arrive in Israel for Euro 2013 in June it'll be Pearce's fourth time leading them at the Finals.
And while their form is impressive, he knows that they will need to be at their very best if they are to become European Champions.
"I think there's a lot of work to do between now and the summer," he said. "I've been to three tournaments before, I know the standard you have to achieve to actually win it so we'll have to go there with our best players, make no mistake about that.
"The Spanish will be strong, the Germans are looking very strong - the big powerhouses of Europe are at this tournament, so there's a long way to go."