England Under-19s to face Mexico in double header in June

Tuesday 10 May 2016
England Under-19s are to play a friendly double-header in Mexico next month as they prepare for July’s Euro Finals.

Head coach Aidy Boothroyd will take his squad to the Centro de Alto Rendimiento in Mexico City for two matches on 4 and 6 June.

And after a successful season so far, in which the U19s have remained unbeaten in ten games, Boothroyd knows that this latest set of matches will provide an ideal test for them ahead of the Finals in Germany a month later.

Mexico v England

Under-19 International Matches
4 & 6 June 2016
Centro de Alto Rendimiento, Mexico

"I came across Mexico a couple of times playing against them with the U20s last year and they were good," he said. 

"But Mexico on their own patch will be a different proposition as it’ll be a different altitude and climate which we’ll have to get used to and I’m hoping that we’ll use that to our advantage when we come to getting the players prepared for July.

"It will be hot in Germany, so Mexico is a good way to assess where the players are at and we can use that time to not only play against a strong footballing nation but also to prepare ourselves for our own European tournament."

The trip comes on the back of last month’s draw for the Euro Finals, where the Young Lions will face group opposition from Croatia, Netherlands and France.

With a spot at next year’s U20 World Cup in South Korea up for grabs should England progress through the group stage, Boothroyd sees these games as giving the players an added experience against a non-European nation with a strong pedigree and in a different climate.

And that plays into the England DNA philosophy, which aims to give players from all of the age groups a varied and worthwhile set of fixtures through their international pathway.

The England Under-19s line-up to face Japan in Manchester

Boothroyd has named a 24 man squad for the trip to Central America

"Mexico, as a nation, are a good football team in the youth ranks," added the former Watford boss.

"They’ve won the World Cup at U17 and U20 level in recent years so they are very strong and it’s good for us to go over there.

"We’re trying to join it up from U16s up to the U21s, as the U16s, U18s and U20s are non-competitive years in terms of Euro Championships. 

"But what we do try and do as national coaches and as a group of staff is to give those players as many different experiences as they need. 

"Then when they become senior internationals, we can work it back to U16s and the pathway and process that they’re part of right now."

Boothroyd's squad for the trip will be named later this week.

By FA Staff