Brian Eastick left Yeovil with a smile on his face after watching England hit four goals past Holland.
England 4-1 Holland
International U18 Friendly
Tuesday 27 March 2007
Huish Park, Yeovil Town FC Brian Eastick was a happy man after watching his young charges smash four goals past Holland on Tuesday night.
The Three Lions looked set for a tough second half once Nick Kuiper equalised Febian Brandy's opening goal on the stroke of half-time, but England pressed the accelerator after the break to run out comfortable winners.
"I was delighted with the result," said the England Under-18 Head Coach. "We knew Holland would play 4-3-3, but we defended too deep in the first half and gave them too much time on the ball. They were better technically. But the second half was much better."
Although Lee Sawyer's stunning 40-yard volley was the talk of the terraces, Eastick would have been pleased with the performance of Manchester City starlet Daniel Sturridge whose clinically taken brace ensured Holland were hammered out of sight.
"Daniel can be a frustrating player but he scored two good goals," said Eastick, before adding that Sturridge and Scott Sinclair, who rapped the post with a curler in the second half, could be promoted to the Under-19s.
"We try and put players up if they are good enough and we will consider pushing Daniel and Scott amongst others up to the Under-19s.
"But there were other good performances tonight. Ross Wilkinson was composed when he came on. I didn't know too much about him before, so that's good. Sam Hutchinson also played well at centre-half. With James Tomkins and Jack Cork out, we were short of two central defenders, but Sam was excellent."
Eastick paid tribute to the Yeovil crowd who turned out in force to see the cream of the nation's young talent. With tickets sold out a week before the game, the teams kick-off in front of 8,147 enthusiastic fans.
"The players really enjoy playing in front of crowds like this," said Eastick." It's an excellent experience for them. Hopefully the crowd have seen some of the stars of the future, maybe in the Dutch side too. They should check their programme in five or six years."
The scoreline was the result of some hard work both on and off the field. While the players did their bit, much effort has gone on behind the scenes to ensure the players are constantly monitored - not just the current squad, but any potential new star.
"We have a comprehensive scouting system," explained Eastick. "Kenny [Swain], John [Peacock] and myself are out all the time watching games and DVDs.
"Martin Hunter, who used to be the Under-19 coach but is now at Norwich, called up a few weeks ago to say that Chris Martin was worth a look. We called him up and he scored the winner against Turkey last week. It was a great example of club coaches and us working well together."