England beat Wales 2-0 on Saturday to go through to the next round of the UEFA U19 Women’s Championship.
England 2-0 Wales
UEFA U19 Women's Championship
First Qualifying Round
South Leeds Stadium
02 October 2004
England secured their place in the next round of qualifying for the UEFA U19 Women’s Championship by beating Wales 2-0 at the South Leeds Stadium on Saturday.
The victory earned England top spot in their First Stage Qualifying Group, maintaining a 100 per cent record.
England had beaten Bulgaria 6-0 and Romania 3-0 earlier in the week as they hosted the first wave of qualifiers in the Yorkshire region.
England will now face a Second Group Qualifying Stage in the Spring - where they are likely to face a tough battle with three other nations including Norway to reach the European Finals in Hungary next summer.
Goals from captain Katie Holtham, of Bristol Rovers, and Arsenal striker Lianne Sanderson saw England see off the challenge of Wales, who finished in second place. England had been cheered on from the stand by The FA Chairman Geoff Thompson.
Coach Mo Marley said: "The First Stage of qualifying is good for introducing new players and getting as many players to earn three more caps, with the experience that those games bring.
This stage is the basis of how we will perform for the whole competition: we have played three different formations, played against teams who have come here to make it difficult for us to play, conceded no goals and there has been a spread of goals scored throughout the team.
"We’re going to have another tough draw in the Second Stage, just as we did last year when we were drawn against the champions France despite having reached the semi-finals.
"I’m not sure about the system when you win the first group and then get a tougher draw than if you’d have come second. But you have to beat the best teams at some stage and it just looks like we’ll be seeing them early again next year."
Although Wales looked bright in the opening minutes, England soon took control of the game and the home side never looked like giving up their 100 per cent record.
Despite having the majority of possession though, England struggled to create clear-cut chances. Lively left winger Dani Bird saw a corner from the right and a shot from outside of the box go wide mid-way through the first half.
Midfielder Heather Scheuber created a good opening on 30 minutes when she dribbled the ball into the area from the left corner, but none of England’s strikers could meet the cross that she floated across the face of goal.
But England took the lead three minutes later when captain Katie Holtham headed in a cross from Bird to the delight of the young crowd.
In the second half, substitute Stephanie Houghton of Sunderland had the best of England’s chances, but saw a goal disallowed on 68 minutes for off-side and after a goalmouth scramble disappointingly shot straight at the Wales ‘keeper after 83 minutes.
England made the most of Wales going down to nine outfield players late in the game - captain Katie Daley being stretchered off the pitch with an ankle injury and all substitutions having being used - to net their second goal on 89 minutes; striker Lianne Sanderson hit the back of the net from close range after a shot had rebounded off the crossbar and landed at her feet.
England: Carly Telford, Nicole Emmanuelle, Michelle Evans, Hayley Kemp, Heather Scheuber, Katie Hotlham (c), Lianne Sanderson, Karen Carney, Danielle Bird (Bonnie Horwood, 80), Kelly Lawrence, Chantelle Parry (Stephanie Houghton, 64)
Subs not used: Darel Poole, Sophie Clough, Nicola Hobbs, Amy Kane, Hannah Smith.
Goals: Holtham, Sanderson
Wales: Lauren Wells, Chantelle Hiller, Katie Daley (c), Francesca Howells, Sarah Walters, Kayleight Green, Kala Morgan, Jessica Fishlock, Emma White, Gwennan Harris, Laura Underdown.