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Handy Anderson

England keeper Curtis Anderson saved and scored in U17 World Cup shootout with Japan

Wednesday 18 Oct 2017

England’s penalty shootout hero Curtis Anderson revealed victory was the only thing on his mind as they knocked Japan out of the U17 World Cup.

The Young Lions had been held to a 0-0 draw over 90 minutes of their first knock-out game of the competition, meaning the tie had to be settled from the spot.

USA v England
  • FIFA U17 World Cup
  • Quarter final
  • 3.30pm, Saturday 21 October
  • Goa, India
  • Live on Eurosport

And the Manchester City keeper relished the situation as he saved Hinata Kida’s penalty before stepping up himself to give England the crucial advantage and head on to a 5-4 win.

There was an audible gasp among the 53,000 crowd in Kolkata when Anderson confidently placed the ball on the spot to score, but Anderson says that he was always on the list of takers. 

“That was always planned, for me to take one,” he revealed.

“Personally, I always practise penalties in training and I always fancy it in a shootout, so I was more than happy to go up for it.

“I was in a zone myself so I didn’t really notice the crowd and the lights, I just pick a side of the goal and go that way and fortunately I managed to save one.”

The FA ;

England will now leave their base in Kolkata and travel to Goa, where they will take on USA in the last eight on Saturday.

And after playing all four of their games in the competition so far in the football-mad city, it’s become something of a home from home for the Young Lions.

But with the World Cup final being staged at the same venue on 28 October, Anderson and his squad-mates are determined to be back again.

“The crowd here has been really good, with the amount of fans who turn up to the games,” he added.

“It’s a great experience for all of us and obviously we hope to be back here again for the final.

“We’ll take every game as it comes, we don’t think it’s any tougher, we just prepare differently for different games.

“The USA game will be tough as well, but it’s nothing that we can’t come through. We’re confident.”

Saturday’s quarter final tie kicks-off at 3.30pm BST and will be shown live on Eurosport.

By Nicholas Veevers