England U18s made it a perfect start to the new season on Sunday, by lifting the trophy at this year’s Limoges Tournament.
A 2-1 win over host nation France at the Stade de Beaublanc saw Neil Dewsnip’s squad make it three wins from three at the tournament to finish top of their four-nation group, following earlier victories over the Netherlands and Russia.
- Limoges Tournament
- Sunday 9 September
- Stde de Beaublanc, Limoges, France
And it will have gone some way to make up for the hurt felt by many of this squad, who suffered U17 Euro heart-break on home turf in May when they lost in a semi-final penalty shoot-out to the Dutch.
It didn’t take them long to get going in Sunday’s decider either, as Manchester United defender Ethan Laird put England ahead after just 11 minutes.
France equalised via captain William Saliba on the stroke of half time to set up an intriguing second period, but when Arsenal midfielder Bukayo Saka made it 2-1 from the penalty spot in the 75th minute, it was enough to seal the honours.
It proved to be a successful trip all-round for Dewsnip’s group, with Chelsea’s Tino Anjorin taking home the top goalscorer award and Manchester United midfielder Mason Greenwood winning the goal of the tournament award for his opening goal in the win over the Netherlands.
The U18s will be back in action again in October, when they will hosts a four nation tournament at St. George’s Park with opposition still to be confirmed.
England: 1 Luca Ashby-Hammond (Fulham), 4 Nathaniel Ogbeta (Manchester City), 5 Ajibola Alese (West Ham United), 6 Ethan Laird (Manchester United), 7 Bukayo Sako (Arsenal), 9 James Garner (Manchester United) (c), 12 Keyendrah Simmonds (West Bromwich Albion), 14 Faustino Anjorin (Chelsea), 15 Curtis Jones (Liverpool), 17 Mason Greenwood (Manchester United), 19 Folarin Balogun (Arsenal).
Substitutes: 10 Anthony Gordon (Everton) for Anjorin 68,8 Bali Mumba (Sunderland) for Balogun 79
Substitutes not used: 2 Vontae Daley-Campbell (Arsenal), 3 Dylan Crowe (Ipswich Town), 11 Arvin Appiah (Nottingham Forest), 13 Arthur Okonkwo (Arsenal), 16 Xavier Amaechi (Arsenal), 18 Tyreece John-Jules (Arsenal)
Head coach: Neil Dewsnip
Goals: Ethan Laird 11, Bukayo Saka 75
Cautions: Curtis Jones 27