Paul Fairclough's side travel to Grodzisk Wielkopolski in November
Poland U23 v England C
5.30pm (GMT), Tuesday 17 November 2009
Inter Groclin Auto S.A. Stadium, Grodzisk Wielkopolski
The England C team continue their preparation for the next International Challenge Trophy when they take on Poland’s U23 side in Grodzisk Wielkopolski on Tuesday 17 November.
The game will give Paul Fairclough’s side another opportunity to demonstrate their ability on the European stage. Having recently returned from a successful visit to Budapest, where a largely new side gained a creditable 1-1 draw with a strong Hungarian side, Fairclough is confident that the team will relish this challenge.
“This match will be much tougher as we will pit our talent against the Polish U23 side that has entered the International Challenge Trophy and whilst they are in a different group, it will be interesting to see their strengths as we might meet them again later in the competition,” he said.
While football is the most popular sport in Poland, with over 400,000 players, their recent performances at senior level are far from inspiring but the country has been chosen by UEFA to co-host the Finals of Euro 2012 with Ukraine.
Turning back the clock, Fairclough said: “My memories of the Polish national team automatically refer to a character who became known as 'The Clown'. The legendary Brian Clough handed this label to Polish goalkeeper Jan Tomaszewski before we played them in a World Cup Qualifier in 1973. The fact was that he turned out to be 'The clown' who made us cry. Having been firm favourites to go through, Tomaszewski single-handidly made save after save to break our hearts and confine us to non qualification.
"This fixture will, once again, provide us with a rich experience; another style of play, different climate and an opportunity to build further friendships around the Europe. I have the opportunity to either experiment, as I did in Hungary, or use the game as a full dress rehearsal to see what we really have. Either way, I am excited and very proud to be invited by the Polish FA to show off our pride of Young Lions.”