England Under-19s romped to a 5-1 victory against Japan at Manchester City’s Academy Stadium in their final game of 2015.
First half goals from Josh Onomah, Patrick Roberts and Tammy Abraham ensured Aidy Boothroyd’s side took a 3-1 advantage into the break.
And Abraham was able to add another in the second period to cement England’s dominance before Dan Crowley tucked away a fifth in the closing minutes.
England 5-1 Japan
International U19 Friendly
Sunday 15 November 2015
Academy Stadium, Manchester
The Young Lions started brightly and they had the lead inside nine minutes.
Onomah was like a bulldozer as he powered his way into the box after picking up the ball outside the area. He cut past several challenges down the left as Ainsley Maitland-Niles looked to take the ball from him, but there was no stopping the Spurs man as he continued his run centrally and lashed home from close-range.
England were well on top, dominating possession and attacking with pace, Maitland-Niles and Roberts, in particular, causing problems down either flanks.
And the latter came close to adding a second just after the 20 minute mark, jinking and teasing the ball past the full-back to create an opening from an acute angle, but his fierce low drive was saved by Ryosuke Kojima in the Japan goal.
Seconds later England had the ideal chance to double their advantage from the penalty spot after Callum Connolly had been sent sprawling.
After discussions with Roberts, Abraham placed the ball on the spot but his effort was saved by Kojima down to his left.
Despite this setback, all was forgotten moments later as Abraham slid in Roberts with a neat reverse pass on the edge of the area and the Manchester City youngster expertly placed the ball in the top corner.
If England thought it was game over they had another thing coming, however, as the visitors got themselves back into the contest with a fine goal.
Right-back Takumi Hasegawa found himself high upfield as he whipped in a cross to the onrushing Kazune Kubota, and the midfielder thundered home a header off the underside of the crossbar to make it 2-1.
But back came England, and making amends for his earlier miss from 12 yards, Abraham drilled home first time with an angled effort following a cross from the right to restore the two-goal advantage.
Reece Oxford, making his U19s debut, was replaced at the break along with goalscorer Onomah. Everton’s Ryan Ledson and on loan Wolves attacker Sheyi Ojo entered the fray as Boothroyd’s men set about stretching their advantage.
After some neat footwork from Roberts, the forward was fouled 25 yards from goal. The former Fulham man dusted himself off to pull the trigger from the set-piece himself, but his effort was smothered by the goalkeeper.
Izzy Brown, fresh from the bench, almost made an immediate impact as he thundered a strike off the post as England came alive again, and they deservedly grabbed their fourth seconds later.
A long ball forward looked to have been dealt with by Reiya Morishita as the centre-half simply had to roll it back to his goalkeeper, but his under-hit pass failed to reach its destination as Abraham pounced to finish for his second.
Freddie Woodman was called in to action as Koji Miyoshi tried his luck from distance and Ojo curled one round the post as the contest neared the final ten minutes.
The latter then turned provider as he darted down the right into the area before squaring the ball back to the onrushing Ledson, but the midfielder was unable to notch for what would have been his second goal in as many games following his strike in the 2-2 draw with Holland on Thursday.
Japan refused to give in, however, and Takeru Kishimoto stung the hands of Woodman again at the death, but the final say would come from England.
From the resulting corner following the Newcastle shotstopper’s save, Crowley picked up the ball on halfway and burst forward, holding off a defender, before slotting home to wrap up the win.
England (4-2-3-1): 1 Freddie Woodman (Newcastle United); 2 Jonjoe Kenny (Everton), 5 Taylor Moore (RC Lens, captain), 6 Tosin Adarabioyo (Manchester City), 3 Callum Connolly (Everton); 4 Reece Oxford (West Ham), 8 Lewis Cook (Leeds United); 7 Patrick Roberts (Manchester City), 10 Josh Onomah (Tottenham Hotspur), 11 Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Ipswich, on-loan from Arsenal); 9 Tammy Abraham (Chelsea)
Subs: 17 Ryan Ledson (Everton) for Oxford 46, 19 Sheyi Ojo (Wolves, on-loan from Liverpool) for Onomah 46, 14 Rico Henry (Walsall) for Cook 62, 21 Izzy Brown (Vitesse Arnhem, on-loan from Chelsea) for Maitland-Niles 62, 20 Adam Armstrong (Coventry, on-loan from Newcastle) for Abraham 70, 18 Daniel Crowley (Arsenal) for Roberts 70,
Subs not used: 13 Sam Howes (West Ham United), 12 Kyle Walker-Peters (Tottenham Hotspur), 15 Cameron Borthwick-Jackson (Manchester United), 16 Dael Fry (Middlesbrough)
Goals: Onomah 9, Roberts 27, Abraham 33, 64, Crowley 90
Head coach: Aidy Boothroyd
Japan (4-4-2): 1 Ryosuke Kojima; 12 Takumi Hasegawa, 5 Takehiro Tomiyasu, 4 Reiya Morishita, 19 Kakeru Funaki; 7 Ritsu Doan, 10 Takumi Sasaki, 16 Kouta Watanabe, 8 Kazune Kubota; 11 Koki Sugimori, 13 Takeru Kishimoto
Subs: 14 Yoichi Naganuma for Kubota 46, 17 Koji Miyoshi for Sugimori 67, 9 Mutsuki Kato for Doan 77, 6 Itsuki Urata for Funaki 85, 2 Takahiro Yanagi for Hasegawa 85
Subs not used: 18 Yuki Kato, 3 Jun Okano, 15 Hiroki Ito, 20 Ryotaro Ito
Goal: Kubota 30
Head coach: Atsushi Uchiyama