England C pick up victory over Ireland in Galway

Monday 01 Jun 2015
England celebrate Matty Pearson's opener in Galway

Three Lions captain Matty Pearson led the way as England C scored two goals in two minutes to beat Republic of Ireland U21s in Galway. 

FC Halifax Town midfielder Pearson opened the scoring in the windy Irish conditions in the 65th minute before Jordan Roberts fired in a second soon after. 

Republic of Ireland U21s 1-2 England C

International Match
Monday 1 June 2015
Eamonn Deacy Park, Galway

West Ham United's Sean Maguire pulled one back for the hosts, but England were able to hold on for a fine season-ending victory. 

Boss Paul Fairclough said: “It was an unbelievable achievement from a group of players who haven’t played for five weeks. 

“They all put in a fantastic performance against a good side. I’m very proud of them.” 

It was a win not just for Step 1 of the non-League pyramid but further down, too. Fairclough’s side finished the game with four players on the pitch from Step 3 clubs. 

Dulwich Hamlet’s Frazer Shaw started while Ilkeston midfielder Callum Chettle - son of Nottingham Forest legend Steve - Rushall Olympic striker Aaron Williams and Hendon’s Charlie Goode came off the bench. 

Paul Fairclough

Paul Fairclough's side finished the season with a win

In all, Fairclough handed six players their first England C caps and they certainly seized their chance. 

The howling wind and driving rain didn’t make for a great spectacle at times. But after a nondescript first-half with a lack of goalscoring chances at either end, Fairclough’s men grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck after the break with the blustery conditions helping their cause. 

Pearson, wearing the armband on his ninth England C appearance, turned in midfield and hit a dipping and swerving shot into the top corner from 25 yards. 

Jordan Roberts

Jordan Roberts was happy with his winner

Before Ireland had a chance to gather their thoughts it was two. 

Aldershot’s Jordan Roberts latched onto a loose ball, drove forward and hammered the past Liam Bossin from distance. 

Shaw went close to a third, but after Maguire cut the deficit on 82 minutes England had to dig deep. 

And they had a let off in stoppage time when Pierce Sweeney headed over an open goal from two yards and victory was England's.

England: Andy Coughlin (Calum Kitscha 77), James Bolton, Ben Heneghan (Charlie Goode 73), Sean Raggett, Jordan Roberts, Alex Woodyard, Jake Gallagher (Callum Chettle 46), Frazer Shaw, Kingsley James, Matty Pearson, Louis Moult (Aaron Williams 61)

Goals: Pearson 65, Roberts 67

By Matthew Badcock In Galway