England U17s were punished for a sloppy start as a ravenous Holland side inflicted a 7-0 defeat on the Young Lions in their opening match of the Algarve Tournament.
Head coach John Peacock was up against his Dutch counterpart Maarten Stekelenburg, the man he defeated in last year’s European Championship Final, but there was to be no such joy for on this occasion.
Holland flew out the traps at Estadio Municipal da Bela Vista as they raced into a four-goal lead inside 18 minutes, punishing England’s mistakes, and Peacock’s youngsters failed to recover.
England 0 v 7 Holland
The U17 Algarve Tournament
Estadio Municipal Bela Vista, Parchal
Friday 13 February 2015
The Friday the 13th nightmare began after only five minutes: a slip in the middle of the park allowed the opposition to pick up possession as Rashaan Fernandes was played through on goal.
The Feyenoord youngster held off the challenge of the backtracking Easah Suliman before poking the ball past the onrushing goalkeeper Aston Oxborough.
Things went from bad to worse five minutes later as their advantage was doubled, Norwich City’s shotstopper Oxborough seeing his clearance strike defender Cameron Humphreys on the back before rebounding into the net.
Then the dangerous Fernandes cut through the English defence down the left, venturing unchallenged all the way to the six-yard box before pulling the ball back across goal for Teun Bijleveld to prod home.
The torment continued for Peacock’s young charges as they found themselves four down moments later. The dangerous Fernandes was the Dutch architect again, receiving the ball on the right of the area before floating an inch-perfect pass for Javairo Dilrosum to volley home from ten yards.
The Young Lions looked shell-shocked, but they tried in vain to claw back some pride, firstly through Nathan Holland’s long-ranger.
Jahmal Hector-Ingram then powered forward from halfway into the box, but the West Ham United striker could only drag his effort wide of the post.
After the frantic opening, the game began to slow down, but Holland stretched their lead further on the stroke of half time as Dilrosum notched his second to hand his side a five-goal advantage at the break.
Wolves midfielder Connor Ronan was handed his debut as he entered the fray with Danny Collinge at the restart, and Lukas Nmecha was thrown on in attack in place of Hector-Ingram as the England looked to claw back some pride in the second-half.
But they were to suffer further blows before time was up.
Substitute Jay-Roy Grot converted from close-range before Manchester City forward Dilrosum sealed his hat-trick with a fine free-kick in the closing stages.
It was a major wake up call for Peacock’s squad, who are back in action in two days time when they take on hosts Portugal.
England (4-2-3-1): 13 Aston Oxborough; 12 Kyron Stabana, 16 Easah Sulliman, 5 Cameron Humphreys (C), 18 Hayden Coulson; 4 Foday Nabay, 8 Daniel Wright; 7 Nathan Holland, 21 Callum Gribben, 11 Layton Ndukwu; 22 Jahmal Hector-Ingram.
Subs: 17 Connor Ronan for Wright 40; 6 Danny Collinge for Nabay 40; 9 Lukas Nmecha for Hector-Ingram 62; 14 Andre Green for Ndukwu 71;
Subs not used: 1 Will Huffer, 10 Marcus Edwards, 3 Tayo Edun, 2 James Yates, 20 Will Patching, 19 Kazaiah Sterling.
Bookings: Humphreys 79.
Head coach: John Peacock
Holland (4-3-3): 1 Justin Bijlow; 2 Giovanni Troupee, 4 Jelle de Lance, 5 Rick van Drongelen, 3 Timothy Fosu-Mensah (C); 6 Reda Boultam, 8 Carel Eiting, 10 Teun Bijleveld, 7 Rashaan Fernandes, 9 Nigel Robertha, 11 Javairo Dilrosum
Substitutes: 18 Teun Koopmeiners for Eiting 40; 16 Abdel el El Ouazzane for Bijlow 55; 21 Donyell Malenfor Fernandes 60; 17 Jay-Roy Grot for Robertha; 19 Fredy Druijf for Bijleveld.
Subs not used: 12 Sherewl Floranus, 13 Darren Sidoel, 14 Mats Knoester, 15 Faye Lassane, 20 Odysseus Velanas, 22 Dani de Wit
Goals: Fernandes 5; Humphreys 10; Bijleveld 13; Dilrosum 18, 39, 79; Grot 70.
Head coach: Maarten Stekelenburg.