England suffered a 4-1 defeat to Thailand in the World Deaf Championships.
suffered a disappointing 4-1 defeat to Thailand in the World Deaf Championships 9th – 12th place play-off.
Despite the early morning kick-off, temperatures soared to 39 degrees in the first-half and with three players suspended and a few injuries, Mark Pover’s side had to contend with some difficult circumstances.
Nevertheless, the Three Lions started off brightly, with Oliver Wilcox and Rowan Dixon sharing early exchanges, applying pressure to Thailand’s defence.
Chris Naylor was unlucky to see his header narrowly miss the target from a corner, while moments later, Wilcox saw his effort bounce off the inside of the bar, having been put through inside the penalty area.
Joseph Neale - making his first start for England - had to be called into action to clear the ball off the line as Thailand started to step up their efforts in search of the first goal of the match. Thailand began to see more of the ball and were testing England’ back line, particularly with their counter-attacks.
England eventually lost out to a counter-attack on the stroke of half-time, after Thailand capitalised on a mistake in England’s midfield, allowing their No.9 to blast the ball past the helpless Spotswood.
With James Clarke and Liam Coventry coming on for Damien Wood and Joseph Neale at the start of the second half, England switched to a new formation, giving Oliver Wilcox extra support upfront. However, Thailand extended their lead when a loose ball into England’s defence was met by the No.12 who passed the ball into the back of net.
England response was almost immediate, with Coventry and Fulham’s Ben Lampert both hitting the woodwork with a couple of efforts; Coventry’s effort was particularly unlucky not to go in. However, Rowan Dixon surged down the left and fed the ball to Wilcox who exchanged passes with Clarke, before his left footed effort made it 2-1.
England’s attacks started to cause problems for the Thai defence, but Thailand’s composure on the counter-attack saw them extend their lead, with two quick-fire goals making it 4-1 and leaving England with an uphill struggle.
Ben Lampert made way for Stuart Bone, giving him his first taste of international football, however it was too late for England to make inroads on the three-goal deficit.
England: Gary Spotswood (GK), Oliver Monksfield, Chris Naylor, Joseph Neale (Liam Coventry), Jason Corbett, Damien Wood (James Clarke), Peter Wood, Ben Lampert (Stuart Bone), Rowan Dixon, Oliver Wilcox, Alistair Dalziel.
Subs not used: Jon Atkinson (GK)