Published 11 November 2021 4 min read
Men's U20

Portugal 2-0 England MU20s

Written by:

Nicholas Veevers

Andy Edwards' Young Lions slip to disappointing defeat in central Portugal on final outing of 2021
England men’s under-20s suffered a 2-0 defeat against Portugal in Leiria on Thursday evening, in what was their only game in November’s international window.
 
Two second-half goals was enough to settle the game at the Estadio Municipal de Leiria, with Andy Edwards’ side shading possession but not being able to find a breakthrough of their own.
 
There was little to separate the teams in a cagey first half, although Portugal will feel they were unfortunate not to break the deadlock.
The closest they came was five minutes before the break when midfielder Pedro Brazao struck the post.
 
But they didn’t have to wait long after the restart to edge in front, as Bernardo Couto opened the scoring in the 52nd minute as they began to become the more threatening of the teams. 
 
The SC Braga midfielder was put clean through and neatly finished with a dink over Young Lions keeper James Trafford as he came out to close him down.
 
And the hosts doubled their lead in the 69th minute, with Benfica defender Filipe Cruz firing home with a first-time effort after an earlier shot had rebounded out to him in the box.
 
It means a disappointing end to 2021 for Edwards’ team, with their next fixtures coming in March 2022 when they take on Poland away before facing Germany on home soil.
 
England: 1 James Trafford (Accrington Stanley, loan from Manchester City), 2 Henry Lawrence (AFC Wimbledon, loan from Chelsea), 3 Joshua Wilson-Esbrands (Manchester City), 4 Daniel Neil (Sunderland), 5 Teden Mengi (Manchester United), 6 Ajibola Alese (West Ham United), 7 Jaden Philogene-Bidace (Aston Villa), 8 Lewis Bate (Leeds United), 9 Sam Greenwood (Leeds United), 10 James McAtee (Manchester City), 11 Morgan Rogers (AFC Bournemouth, loan from Manchester City)
 
Substitutes: 12 Kaine Kesler-Hayden (Swindon Town, loan from Aston Villa) for Lawrence 46, 14 Leighton Clarkson (Blackburn Rovers, loan from Liverpool) for McAtee 64, 17 Jesurun Rak-Sakyi (Crystal Palace) for Philogene-Bidace 64, 18 Cameron Archer (Aston Villa) for Rogers 64, 16 Tyler Morton (Liverpool) for Neil 74, 15 Reece Welch (Everton) for Alese 78, 19 Jay Stansfield (Fulham) for Greenwood 78
 
Substitutes not used:  13 Louie Moulden (Wolverhampton Wanderers), 20 Dennis Cirkin (Sunderland), 22 Harvey Cartwright (Hull City)
 
Head coach: Andy Edwards

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