England Under-19s head into Euro semi-final with Croatia win

Monday 18 Jul 2016
Izzy Brown celebrates with Ryan Ledson

England Under-19s made it three wins from three to top their group at the Euro Finals on Monday with a 2-1 victory over Croatia.

An early goal from Izzy Brown was quickly followed up by an own-goal from Croatian defender Silvio Anocic, as Aidy Boothroyd’s side head into Thursday’s semi-final with Italy on the back of a 100 per cent record so far.

England 2-1 Croatia

UEFA European U19 Championship
Group B
Monday 18 July 2016
Heidenheim Arena, Germany
Live on Eurosport

With the Young Lions’ progress to the next stage already secured ahead of this game, it meant Boothroyd was able to make changes and ensure that all of the outfield players in his squad had started a game before going into the knock-out stages.

And those involved were clearly keen to make an impression as England took the lead after just three minutes when Brown received a pass from Sheyi Ojo on the left and danced around two challenges into the area before smashing a low shot past keeper Ivan Nevistic.

They followed that up with a second goal five minutes later when Brown pulled back a low cross from the left which was destined for Kyle Walker-Peters, before Anocic got there first to divert past his own keeper.

The Young Lions had the ball in the net for a third time in the 29th minute when Ademola Lookman fired home from close range, but that effort was chalked off with the Charlton forward having just strayed offside.

England Under-19s line-up ahead of their Euro game with Croatia in Heidenheim

England Under-19s line-up ahead of their Euro game with Croatia in Heidenheim

Croatia could have halved the deficit just before the break, but substitute Fran Brodic shot over inside the area after being set up by Matija Fintic and Freddie Woodman was then forced into a good save when a corner only half-cleared as far as captain Nikola Moro, whose low shot was creeping into the bottom corner.

Moro fared better just before the hour mark though, when he struck a stunning left-footer from 25-yards past a helpless Woodman to give Croatia hope.

But England remained largely in control of the possession and the game to keep the Croats sufficiently at bay and secure their third successive 2-1 victory of the competition.

Boothroyd and his squad will now turn their focus onto Italy later this week, when they face off for a place in next Sunday's Final against either Portugal or France who meet in the other semi-final.

England Under-19s: 1 Freddie Woodman (Newcastle United); 5 Taylor Moore (RC Lens), 6 Dael Fry (Middlesbrough), 14 Reece Oxford (West Ham United), 2 Jonjoe Kenny (Everton); 12 Kyle Walker-Peters (Tottenham Hotspur), 8 Josh Onomah (Tottenham Hotspur), 14 Ryan Ledson (Everton); 10 Sheyi Ojo (Liverpool), 17 Ademola Lookman (Charlton Athletic), 11 Izzy Brown (Chelsea).

Substitutes: 18 Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal) for Moore 78

Substitutes not used: 4 Jordan Rossiter (Glasgow Rangers), 13 Sam Howes (West Ham United), 7 Tammy Abraham (Chelsea), 9 Dominic Solanke (Chelsea), 15 Fikayo Tomori (Chelsea)

Head coach: Aidy Boothroyd

Goals: Izzy Brown 4, Silvio Anocic 10

Cautions: N/A

Croatia: 12 Ivan Nevistic; 2 Matej Hudecek, 5 Vinko Soldo, 6 Karlo Plantak, 3 Silvio Anocic; 18 Kristian Jakic; 17 Matija Fintic, 14 Luka Ivanusec, 10 Andrija Balic, 7 Josip Brekalo; 16 Nikola Moro (c)

Substitutes: 9 Fran Brodic for Brekalo 38, 8 Bojan Knezevic for Fintic 61, 13 Ivan Bozic for Moro 77

Substitutes not used: 1 Karlo Letica,11 Davor Lovren, 15 Marijan Cabraja.

Head coach: Ferdo Milin

Goals: Nikola Moro 58

Cautions: Vinko Soldo 69

Attendance: 7400

By FA Staff