VIDEO: Blake's back to basics
By Nicholas Veevers in Bolton
Wednesday, 30 May, 2012
U19s Head Coach targets victory and an improvement on Sunday's performance
Tickets cost £3 for adults and £1 for concessions
Available at Deepdale on the night
England U19s Head Coach Noel Blake takes his side into their final Elite Qualifying Round match on Wednesday evening knowing that a victory is required if the Young Lions want to stand any chance of reaching the European U19 Championship Finals.
Blake's team are currently top of the Group Two table and if that remains the same after the third round of games in Lancashire, then they will be off to Estonia in July for the Finals.
However, with Montenegro level on points with England and lying in second spot by virtue of their two goal inferior difference, Blake knows that only three points will be enough to give his squad a chance of progressing, even before the other result comes into play.
"We go into the final game with all to play for and that's what we expected," said Blake, ahead of the match with Switzerland in Preston.
"We would've liked six points on the board rather than four, so that's the only downside really but nothing has really changed as we still need to win this match.
"Switzerland are a decent side and we know this will be a tough game for us but if we apply ourselves correctly and are at it, tidy one or two things up and improve our passing, we can win the game.
"We need to be a bit more clinical too, like we were against Slovenia in the second half."
The Swiss themselves still have a chance of qualification themselves, if they can beat England and then rely on Slovenia to turn over Montenegro in the game being played simultaneously at Rochdale FC's Spotland home, so there's a lot riding on Wednesday's fixture at Deepdale.
"They're in with a chance, so they will go for it," added Blake. "I know from experience that we're in for a tough game.
"I know I keep saying this, but there's no easy international football matches at any level. People will look at it and think 'England should win' but you've got to earn the right.
"We played Switzerland at this stage last year and we know they will be tough opposition. They're on the upward spiral at youth development level. Only three years ago, they were World Champions at U17 level.
"But if we can do the right things, more often than not, we'll come out on top."
With what's happening in the other fixture at Spotland and the connotations for the Swiss and England, there will no doubt be half an eye on any incidents occurring there but Blake knows his side have to concentrate on their own job first and foremost.
"First things first, we need to deal with Switzerland and try to come out of it with a positive result. That's all we've got to do," he said.
"Whatever happens between Montenegro and Slovenia, we can't do anything about."
The game will be shown live here on FATV from around 7.15pm so if you can't be there to cheer the boys on, make sure you do the next best thing and watch the action live.