Latest U19s crop start with a win

Latest U19s crop start with a win

Englands U19 side made a winning start to the new season last night as they beat their Slovakian counterparts 2-0 at Gresty Road.

As with each new term, all eyes were on how the latest selection would do as many made the step up from last seasons successful U17 side and they weren’t disappointed as the young Lions comfortably dispatched their opposition with goals in each half from Liverpool duo Michael Ngoo and Jonjo Shelvey.

Noel Blake’s team dominated the game from start to finish in the international friendly and a goal in the 16th minute after Ross Barkley set up Ngoo score on his debut was no less than they deserved.

They continued to create chances but had to wait until the 72nd minute before doubling their advantage, former Charlton Athletic starlet Shelvey stepping up to curl home a free kick from 25 yards to seal the win.

This was their only opportunity to train together ahead of the European Championship qualifiers next month as they look to progress from a group containing Cyprus, Albania and Belgium and Blake declared himself delighted with the performance after the game.

“The victory is one thing, and that’s always a good start for a new year group. But I was absolutely delighted with the performance from start to finish.

I thought we controlled the tempo of the game and scored two very good goals but I was most pleased with our passing and our game management in particular.

That’s something we’ve spoken about a lot and it really pleased me, so it’s good food for thought from the first game.”

Arsenal’s Benik Afobe amd Nico Yennaris also made their debuts for the U19s, appearing as second half substitutes, and will hope they have done enough to assure themselves of a place in next month’s squad.

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