Men's Under 21s
Men's Under 21s
The FA

England U21s 2-2 Germany (3-4 on pens)

Young Lions suffer penalty shootout defeat in U21 Euro semi-final

Tuesday 27 Jun 2017

England Under-21s’ Euro dream was brought to an end in Tychy as the Young Lions exited to Germany after a semi-final penalty shootout defeat.

Aidy Boothroyd’s men took their highly-rated opponents all the way, even creating the clearer chances over the course of the 120 minutes and holding them off after coming under some strong second-half pressure.

But when German keeper Julian Pollersbeck saved spot-kicks from Tammy Abraham and Nathan Redmond, it was Stefan Kuntz’s side who clinically progressed to Friday’s final.

England 2-2 Germany (3-4 on pens)
  • European U21 Championship
  • Semi-Final
  • Tuesday 27 June 2017
  • Tychy Stadium, Poland

It had all started so well too, as England began with a flurry and had five gilt-edged chances within the first 20 minutes, with the Germans caught cold from the off. 

Firstly, Demarai Gray and Will Hughes combined well on the right before the latter broke clear into the box. His cut-back was heading straight for Abraham, but an excellent clearance from Marc-Oliver Kempf saved the day.

And Nathaniel Chalobah had two good opportunities with his head from successive James Ward-Prowse corners, but could only guide both of his efforts over.Hughes then slipped a perfect pass through to Gray, but after his first shot was blocked, a dinked follow-up was superbly saved by Pollersbeck.

The FA ;

The chances kept coming and Abraham almost broke the deadlock in the 18th minute when Ward-Prowse’s free-kick from the right was headed goalwards by the Chelsea man only for Pollersbeck to produce another stunning save.

Germany slowly settled into the game though and started to show their teeth, with Davie Selke forcing Jordan Pickford into a save before Jeremy Toljan flashed a shot narrowly over the bar after a good pattern of play.

Pickford then had to make another save from the attack-minded Toljan, after his deflected shot was arrowing towards the top corner. 

The Germans then took the lead after 35 minutes when Toljan again got in down the right and dinked a perfect cross into the box for Selke, who made no mistake by planting a firm header past Pickford.

England hit straight back just over five minutes later though, when Ward-Prowse’s corner saw Calum Chambers’ header and follow-up shot blocked before the ball fell to Gray, who made no mistake by firing home from close range.

And he could have had a second moments later, when Abraham’s hold-up play allowed Hughes to deliver a ball over the top but Gray could not quite control and Pollersbeck collected.

The Young Lions took the lead less than five minutes after the restart when Hughes danced into the area before picking out Abraham who did the rest by slotting home from close range.

The FA ;

Germany came out of their shell in the chase for a leveller and after a spell of pressure in England’s half, they equalised with 20 minutes to go as Max Arnold’s corner from the left was powered home by Felix Platte, who had replaced the injured Selke a few minutes earlier.

A cat-and-mouse affair ensued with both teams tentatively looking for a goal, whilst always wary that extra-time was around the corner.

Substitute Redmond came the closest, with a low shot drilled narrowly wide of the post after his run in from the left brought him within range of goal.

Extra time duly arrived and whilst Germany largely controlled the first period, it was England who had the best chance when Ward-Prowse set up Lewis Baker, who shot well over.

And John Swift headed wide of the target after fellow substitute Dominic Iorfa had done well to cross from the right.

The key chance came with just five minutes to go when Toljan placed a low cross to the far post where Nadiem Amiri just failed to connect.

And that proved to be the last of the chances, with England holding out for the heartache of a shootout lottery.

The FA ;

England: 1 Jordan Pickford (Everton); 2 Mason Holgate (Everton), 5 Calum Chambers (Arsenal), 23 Alfie Mawson (Swansea City), 3 Ben Chilwell (Leicester City); 8 James Ward-Prowse (Capt; Southampton), 4 Nathaniel Chalobah (Chelsea), 19 Will Hughes (Watford), 7 Demarai Gray (Leicester City); 9 Tammy Abraham (Chelsea), 10 Lewis Baker (Chelsea)

Substitutes: 14 Jacob Murphy (Norwich City) for Chalobah 66, 11 Nathan Redmond (Southampton) for Gray 73, 15 John Swift (Reading) for Hughes 86, 17 Dominic Iorfa (Wolverhampton Wanderers) for Holgate 106

Substitutes not used: 6 Jack Stephens (Southampton), 12 Matt Targett (Southampton), 13 Angus Gunn (Norwich City, loan from Manchester City), 16 Rob Holding (Arsenal), 18 Kortney Hause (Wolverhampton Wanderers), 20 Jack Grealish (Aston Villa), 21 Jonathan Mitchell (Derby County), 22 Cauley Woodrow (Fulham)

Head coach: Aidy Boothroyd

Goals: Gray 41, Abraham 50

Penalties: Baker (scored), Abraham (missed), Chilwell (scored), Ward-Prowse (scored), Redmond (missed)

Yellow cards: Hughes 11, Chilwell 59, Holgate 83

Germany: 12 Julian Pollersbeck; 2 Jeremy Toljan, 6 Gideon Jung, 15 Marc-Oliver Kempf, 3 Yannick Gerhardt; 19 Janik Haberer; 22 Maximilian Philipp, 7 Max Meyer, 10 Maximilian Arnold (capt), 11 Serge Knabry; 9 Davie Selke

Substitutions: 13 Felix Platte for Selke 63, 16 Thilo Kehrer 80, 18 Nadiem Amiri for Grabry 87, 21 Dominik Kohr for Haberer 10

Substitutes not used: 1 Marvin Schwabe, 5 Markus Stark, 23 Odisseas Vlachodimos, 4 Waldemar Anton, 6 Gideon Jung, 8 Mahmoud Dahoud, 14 Lukas Klunter, 17 Mitchell Weiser, 20 Levin Oztunali

Goals: Selke 35, Platte 70

Penalties: Arnold (scored), Gerhardt (missed), Philipp (scored), Meyer (scored), Amiri (scored)

Yellow cards: Selke 19, Gnabry 81, Kempf 108, Meyer 112

Head coach: Stefan Kuntz

Referee: Gediminas Mazeika

Attendance: 13,214

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By Nicholas Veevers in Tychy, Poland