Matt Targett feeling Euro heat after joining U21s squad

Thursday 26 Mar 2015
Matt Targett had been a regular for England U20s before his first U21s call-up
Matt Targett admits he can feel the heat as England Under-21s continue their preparations for this summer’s Euro Finals.

The Southampton defender is with Gareth Southgate’s squad for the first time this week as the Three Lions face Czech Republic and Germany.

Czech Republic v England

U21 International Match
7.30pm, Friday 27 March 2015
Latna Stadium, Prague

And after getting a taste of training in Olomouc this week, the 19-year-old can sense the Euro fever which is growing throughout the group.

"The training’s been good, hard and intense, which is what you want," said Targett, who had been a regular in Aidy Boothroyd’s U20s prior to his first U21 call-up.

"There’s a real expectation for England this year with the Euros here and the seniors not having anything.

"There’s pressure on the U21s but you can feel the determination to do well, everyone is really looking forward to it and it will be a good challenge for us.

"It’s great to be involved in preparing for games against the likes of Czech Republic and Germany, who will both be in the Euros.

Watch as England U21s get their first taste of training in Czech Republic

"That’s only good for the lads so we can get used to what it’s going to be like in the summer."

With Southampton team-mate James Ward-Prowse and former Saints star Calum Chambers also in the squad, it has not taken the Winchester-born left-back long to find his feet.

England have been staying at their summer Euro base since Monday to get a feel for their summer surroundings and prepare for Friday’s game with the host nation in Prague.

And Targett is hoping he can earn his first U21s cap before the group head back to England for next Monday’s game with Germany.

"Of course it would be nice to play, in either of the games," he admitted.

"It’s been a good experience coming up from the U20s and all the lads have welcomed me into the group really well.

"It always helps if you know a couple of the lads, they help you get to know a couple of the lads and stuff like that.

The England Under-21s squad train in Olomouc.

The U21s squad have been working at their summer Euro base since Monday

"They’re [Czech Republic] the hosts this summer so there will be a home crowd giving them a lot of support on Friday, but hopefully we can play to our best and get the win.

"The Germany will be a tough test too, but we know that every game in the Euros is going to be like that."

Despite being away with Southgate’s squad, Targett also made sure he kept tabs on his former U20s team-mates on Wednesday night.

After being a regular with the Young Lions in their unbeaten run so far this season, he was pleased to see that form continue courtesy of a penalty shoot-out win over Mexico at the Hive. 

"I was looking through the Twitter feed and I saw they got the win on penalties," he revealed. 

"It’s great that they’ve carried on their unbeaten run this season, it’s been a decent season and we’ve had some interesting games so hopefully they can keep it going in their next game."

Tickets for Monday's game with Germany at the Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough are still on sale. Click here for more details on how to purchase them.

By Nicholas Veevers Content Manager - FA Owned Channels In Olomouc, Czech Republic