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The FA

The entertainer

Jadon Sancho enjoying his time in India as England target U17 World Cup success

Tuesday 10 Oct 2017

Jadon Sancho says he’s been caught by the thrill of “entertaining the crowd” at the U17 World Cup in India.

The Young Lions forward played a major role in Sunday’s opening game win over Chile, providing the pass for Callum Hudson-Odoi’s early opener before adding two goals for himself after the break.

Jadon Sancho
  • Born: London, 25 March 2000
  • Club: Borussia Dortmund
  • Idols: Ronaldinho & Neymar
  • Twitter: @Sanchooo10

And when Sancho’s room-mate Angel Gomes added a late fourth in front of an official crowd of 46,000, who were largely in support of England, it capped off a career highlight for the 17-year-old.

“Everyone’s buzzing and really happy that they’re here, so we just can’t wait for the next game,” admitted Sancho, who joined up with the squad last week from Borussia Dortmund.

“The team performance was really good, it’s always nice to get an early goal and after you do that, we just made them run.

“I was very happy with the goals, we [Callum Hudson-Odoi] have a thing in training and get on well off the pitch, but in the first half I could have played better.

“In the second half, I showed a bit more. It’s always nice to score for your country and try to set the standard and the benchmark.

“I just like exciting the crowd with my football.

“India’s been great, the welcome has been really good, they’ve cheered us on and they were screaming our names.

“To hear someone screaming your name from another country is really big, as I never knew that I was known out here.”

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For Sancho and his squad-mates, this is their first taste of a World Cup and follows swiftly on from this summer’s trip to the Euros where England reached the final after an impressive campaign.

They were desperately unlucky to miss out on the title in Croatia too, after a last-minute equaliser from Spain sent the game to penalties which they went on to lose.

But the former Watford and Manchester City youngster believes the ups and downs of that trip has already helped the squad in their approach to the World Cup.

“I think the Euros took the pressure off this one really, because the first one there was big, our first major tournament for England,” he explained.

“Knowing it was our first major game here in a World Cup, we took it really well and managed the crowd really well.

England v Mexico
  • FIFA U17 World Cup
  • 12.30pm, Wednesday 11 October
  • Kolkata, India
  • Live on Eurosport

 “We’ve all got chemistry and it’s good to be playing with my team-mates again.”

Steve Cooper’s men are back in action again on Wednesday when they face Mexico in their second group game in Kolkata.

A victory in that game would go a long way to ensuring progress into the knock-out stages, but the south Londoner is confident that there’s enough ability in this group to go a long way.

“Everyone just can’t wait to play again,” he added.

“We need another three points to secure second in the group and be a bit more comfortable.

“Everyone here is a good team, but until they play us, it’s different.”

Wednesday’s game kicks-off at 12.30pm BST and can be watched live on Eurosport in the UK.

By Nicholas Veevers