Two-goal Bradley Fewster helps England topple Belgium

Wednesday 15 Oct 2014
Fewster scored twice in England's win
England U19s made it three wins from three in their European Championship first qualifying round campaign following a 4-2 defeat of Belgium in Luxembourg.

Sean O’Driscoll’s side had already advanced to the next stage, courtesy of victories over Belarus and the host nation, but they ensured a 100 per cent record with a battling display against a talented outfit – who had also qualified for the last round of Euro qualifying.

Fulham forward Patrick Roberts put England ahead in the opening 10 minutes with a delicious free-kick, his fourth goal in three games.

England 4-2 Belgium

UEFA U19s Championship
First Qualifying Round
Wednesday 15 October
Avenir Beggen FC, Luxembourg

Dion Cools levelled for the Belgians, but Bradley Fewster headed home Ben Chilwell’s cross to give his side a slender lead at half-time.

Obbi Oulare Mamadou brought the scores back level once more, but late strikes from Brandon Barker and Fewster handed England all three points.

O’Driscoll started with the same team that defeated Belarus on the opening day, with one exception as Fewster came in for the injured Izzy Brown.

It was a fairly even start to the match with both sides unable to gain the upper hand – until England were awarded a free-kick on the right-hand side of the Belgium penalty box.

England 4-2 Belgium: Video highlights

Roberts stepped up to curl home a delightful left-footed effort which sailed into the far corner beyond the desperate clutches of Belgian goalkeeper Nordin Jackers.

Fewster was teed up by Barker a few moments later but the Middlesbrough striker dragged his shot wide when well placed.

And he was left to rue that miss just after the quarter-hour mark as Belgium defender Cools headed home a corner at the near post to equalise.

England goalkeeper Freddie Woodman kept the scores level midway through the first half, getting down well to turn Jari Vandeputte’s long-range drive behind for a corner, which ultimately came to nothing.

Fewster scored a hat-trick against Belgium in February for the U18s – and he proved a thorn in their side once more, this time peeling off to the back post to head home Chilwell’s pinpoint cross from the left.

Patrick Roberts

Patrick Roberts scored direct from a free-kick

With the lead restored, the Young Lions grew in confidence. MK Dons midfielder Dele Alli flashed a 20-yard shot wide and then the captain, Bryn Morris, dragged Roberts’ pull-back wide of the far post from the edge of the box.

Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek created a fantastic chance for himself when collecting Barker’s cross but, after side-stepping the defender, he smashed his shot against Jackers’ legs.

Two of the first-half goalscorers had chances to double their tally within minutes of the restart, but Fewster had his effort cleared off the line by Herve Matthys and Cools’ cute flick, from Vandeputte’s free-kick, landed on the roof of the net – as did Mamadou’s lob shortly after.

This was the first of three chances Mamadou had in quick succession. He beat Woodman to Chilwell’s weak back pass but nudged his shot wide of the target, and then thumped wide an effort from 12 yards after being put under pressure by Ashley Smith-Brown.

But he made no mistake with his fourth attempt, rifling home a low shot from 18 yards which nestled into the corner to make it 2-2.

England’s Ola Aina, captain in the 8-0 rout of Luxembourg, came within inches of restoring his side’s lead, marauding forward from centre back and thumping a 25-yard effort against the bar. The Chelsea defender was alert at the other end, too, sliding in to block Matthys’ angled shot which looked destined for the net. It proved a crucial intervention.

As the game entered its final stages, the Young Lions grabbed all three points.

First, Barker combined well with Roberts just outside the Belgian area, allowing the Manchester City forward to curl the ball into the far corner.

And Roberts was involved in the fourth goal, too, getting to the by-line before pulling the ball across goal for Fewster to convert his second of the night – and his fifth against Belgium this year.

The draw for the elite qualifying round will take place in Nyon on 3 December.

England (4-3-3): 1 Freddie Woodman (Newcastle United – on loan at Hartlepool United); 12 Ashley Smith-Brown (Manchester City), 2 Ola Aina (Chelsea), 6 Brendan Galloway (Everton), 3 Ben Chilwell (Leicester City); 15 Dele Alli (MK Dons), 4 Bryn Morris (Middlesbrough; C), 14 Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea); 7 Patrick Roberts (Fulham), 9 Bradley Fewster (Middlesbrough), 18 Brandon Barker (Manchester City).

Substitutes: 8 Charlie Colkett (Chelsea) for Alli (82), 17 Harry Winks (Tottenham Hotspur) for Barker (82), 10 Alex Kiwomya (Chelsea) for Fewster (87).

Substitutes not used: 13 Ted Smith (Southend United), 5 Reece Burke (West Ham United), 16 Robert Dickie (Reading).

Goals: Roberts (9), Fewster (31, 85), Barker (81).

Head coach: Sean O’Driscoll

Belgium: 1 Nordin Jackers, 2 Dion Cools, 3 Mathias Bossaerts, 4 Herve Matthys (C), 5 Alexis Scholl, 6 Gilles Dewaele, 9 Obbi Oulare Mamadou, 10 Jari Vandeputte, 11 Andy Kawaya, 16 Samuel  Bastien, 18 Iebe Swers.

Substitutes: 15 Alexis De Sart for Bastein (63), 8 Tom Rosenthal for Swers (84).

Substitutes not used: 12 Quintijn Steelant, 13 Joey Dujardin, 14 David Henen.

Goals: Cools (16), Mamadou (65).

Head coach: Gert Verheyen

Referee: Kristo Tohver

Attendance: 450

By Glenn Lavery in Luxembourg