Past encounters with Romania
Wednesday, 22 September, 2010
England’s Under-21s meet their Romanian counterparts for the sixth time at Carrow Road.
Here are the results so far:-
1980: Romania 4 England 0 in Ploesti
1981: England 3 Romania 0 in Swindon
1985: Romania 0 England 0 in Brasov
1985: England 3 Romania 0 in Ipswich
2007: England 1 Romania 1 in Bristol
All matches were UEFA Championship qualifiers except the last mentioned
England U21s’ first-ever defeat in a UEFA Championship qualifier in 1980 was as decisive as it was unexpected. Having survived for nearly an hour in the face of a volatile Romanian crowd and strong physical pressure from their opponents, Dave Sexton’s youngsters suddenly cracked in Ploesti.
England had started well, Justin Fashanu having a headed ‘goal’ disallowed for offside after six minutes and Gordon Cowans trying an acrobatic overhead kick that the Romanians cleared with difficulty. But things began to go the way of the home side after half-time, Terhes fastening onto Mark Dennis’s weak back-pass to flick them into the lead on 52 minutes.
A missed penalty by Bozesan following a Dennis foul was only a temporary respite before a Paul Dyson own goal made it 2-0. Then Terhes went on to complete his hat-trick. But England seized an opportunity for revenge before an enthusiastic crowd at Swindon’s County Ground six months later.
Sexton’s squad had once more undergone several enforced changes – but, as so often in the past, the replacements proved more than equal to the task. After 12 minutes Garry Thompson headed against a post and Adrian Heath made no mistake from the rebound. Then England skipper Gary Owen crossed for Thompson to double the lead on 64 minutes.
Nine minutes later the best move of the game saw Owen, Thompson, Duxbury and Lee combine to give Heath the chance to wrap things up with a third. There were no further goals, but the evening ended on a happy note as the efficient Swindon ground staff managed to locate Ray Ranson’s missing tooth!
England held onto the leadership of their UEFA Championship qualifying group after holding Romania to a goalless draw in picturesque Brasov in 1985. Paul Rideout’s header skimmed the bar and Tony Cottee’s fierce free-kick was held by Stingaciv – but for the most part England were on the retreat. It was a different story five months later at Portman Road.
Sexton’s England dominated the return fixture for an hour without breaking down some determined Romanian resistance. The turning point came when Cottee came on for Paul Allen and Danny Wallace was pushed into a more forward role. Steve Hodge headed England’s opener six minutes later and volleyed in a second on 77 minutes before Stewart Robson made it 3-0 soon after that.
A new era for Stuart Pearce’s Under-21 team couldn’t have got off to a better start in August 2007, Matt Derbyshire firing them ahead after seven minutes at Ashton Gate. The Blackburn striker stayed alert when Gabriel Agbonlahor’s shot ran across the six-yard box to produce a smooth finish. A bizarre Romanian equaliser on 25 minutes, the ball hitting Joe Hart in the back and bouncing over the line, denied England a morale-boosting victory.