England U18s ended their week with a penalty shootout win against Czech Republic at St. George’s Park.
The teams had shared a 2-2 draw after 90 minutes, meaning the result was settled from the spot with a 5-4 scoreline in England’s favour after Marcus Dewhurst’s sudden death save from Simon Gabriel.
It was the unfortunate Czech captain Tomas Vicek who contributed to England taking the lead in the 26th minute, as his own goal after good work by Mason Greenwood broke the deadlock.
And Neil Dewsnip’s side had chance to double their advantage from the spot when Bukayo Saka had saw his effort from the spot saved by keeper Vitezslav Jaros.
From there, the visitors bounced back with two quickfire goals to switch the game on its head thanks to Jakub Zeronik in the 53rd minute and Felix Cejka in the 62nd minute.
But substitute Tyreece John-Jules drew his side level in the 71st minute and when neither team could find a winner in 90 minutes, it was down to spot-kicks.
John-Jules, Faustino Anjorin, Arvin Appiah, Greenwood all scored before Curtis Jones’ miss allowed the Czechs a chance to make it 4-4 after hitting the bar with one of their efforts.
But when Ethan Laird scored, it allowed Dewhurst to make himself England’s hero with the crucial save.
England U18s: 13 Marcus Dewhurst (Sheffield United), 2 Ethan Laird (Manchester United), 3 Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), 4 James Garner (Manchester United) (c), 9 Mason Greenwood (Manchester United), 12 Vontae Daley-Campbell (Arsenal), 14 Nathaniel Ogbeta (Manchester City), 15 Bali Mumba (Sunderland), 16 Anthony Gordon (Everton), 17 Keyendrah Simmonds (West Bromwich Albion), 18 Folarin Balogun (Arsenal),
Substitutes: 5 Pascal Kpohomouh (Southampton) for Sako 63, 10 Curtis Jones (Liverpool) for Simmonds 63, 8 Faustino Anjorin (Chelsea) for Gordon 63, 11 Tyreece John-Jules (Arsenal) for Balogun 63, 7 Arvin Appiah (Nottingham Forest) for Mumba 74
Substitutes not used: 1 Luca Ashby-Hammond (Fulham), 6 Ajibola Alese (West Ham United), 22 Arthur Okonkwo (Arsenal)
Head coach: Neil Dewsnip
Goals: Tomas Vicek OG 21, Tyreece John-Jules 71