Danny Ings targets Portugal test on home Turf

Thursday 13 Nov 2014
Ings has enjoyed his return to the England Under-21s squad this week
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Burnley striker Danny Ings is preparing to lead the line for England Under-21s on home turf on Thursday night.

Gareth Southgate’s squad take on Portugal at Turf Moor as their preparations for next summer’s Euro Finals begin.

And Ings is hoping to get the nod to run out wearing the Three Lions in front of a home crowd, against the nation who will be in opposition for England’s Euro opener in Czech Republic next June.

England U21s v Portugal U21s

International U21s Match
7.45pm, Thursday 13 November 2014
Turf Moor, Burnley FC
Live on BT Sport
Tickets cost £10/£5

"It should be a great atmosphere," said Ings ahead of the squad's trip to Lancashire. 

"It’s a great, family club and town and there’ll hopefully be a lot of faces that turn up on the night.

"But we’ve got to go into the game and get the ‘friendly’ part out of our heads really.

"It’s important we go into the game with the mentality that we did in the qualification.

"We need to look out for different shapes that they may play, or danger men they have and the ways they defend and the ways we can break them down."

An unfortunate hamstring injury kept Ings out of last month’s play-off victory over Croatia, but he has been a regular in Southgate’s squad since his first call-up last October.

Danny Ings in training with England Under-21s.

Ings has become a regular choice in Southgate's squad

And he admits he still finds himself learning and improving with every trip he makes to join the Three Lions squad.

"I’m happy with the progress that I’m making as an individual," admits the Winchester-born ace.

"I’m improving every time that I come away, just with the coaching from Steve [Holland] and Gareth and training with the players here.

"There’s some fantastic talent and I’m a player who likes to learn, whether it’s from defenders or strikers, and I definitely have learnt a lot since I’ve been with the Under-21s.

"It showed how good we were in the group to get through and the way we beat Croatia was fantastic.

"The lads showed heart and got through it and I think anyone looking at the draw now will probably fear us.

"There’s a lot of talent and it’s a unique group who are very close and sometimes, that can take you a long way."

Watch Ings practising his finishing in training on Wednesday

 


With Portugal also one of England’s opponents in the group stages of the Euros next summer, Thursday’s game becomes something of a dress rehearsal for June.

But Ings believes neither England or Portugal will take too much notice of how the result goes on Thursday in their long-term thinking.

"Winning the game can give you that mental edge, but at the same time if you don’t win it, then it can give you inspiration to do better," he said. 

"You would make sure you do things in a different way next time to make sure you win.

"So it can work both ways really, but I’m sure we’ll get what we need to get out of the game."

Tickets for the game cost £10 for adults and £5 for juniors. They can be bought on the evening from the Turf Moor Ticket Office. For more details call 01282 700003.

By Nicholas Veevers at St. George's Park