Report: England MU20s 2-1 Morocco
England men’s Under-20s made it two wins from two this month with a 2-1 win over Morocco at the Pinatar Arena in Spain.
Head coach Ian Foster made nine changes to his starting line-up compared to Wednesday’s 3-0 win over Chile, with a game against Australia still to come on Tuesday (kick-off 4pm).
The result continues an impressive 2022 for a squad largely consisting of the players who won the U19 EUROs in July under Foster and are now building towards next summer’s U20 World Cup in Indonesia.
There were few chances of note in the first half prior to midfielder Charlie Patino giving England the lead on 27 minutes. The ball broke to the Arsenal midfielder, who is currently on loan at Blackpool, on the edge of the area and his low drive was deflected past the diving Morocco goalkeeper.
The opposition had a couple of efforts prior to the interval but neither tested Celtic goalkeeper Tobi Oluwayemi.
It remained a cagey affair in the second period but when Dane Scarlett had a deflected effort just before the hour mark, a well-worked corner on the right ended with a cross which was expertly controlled by Tim Iroegbunam and the on-loan QPR midfielder-cum-defender smashed the ball into the far corner.
This jolted Morocco into life and four minutes later they pulled a goal back when their number 17 created half a yard of space when running at Reece Welch and squeezed the ball past Oluwayemi at the near post.
Foster subsequently made a quadruple change and almost got an immediate response as the Young Lions struck the crossbar.
There were further changes to the line-ups and another replacement, Daniel Jebbison, almost scored a stunning third goal for England, as his neat flick inside the defender saw him strike a left-footed shot from the corner of the area which had to be parried away.
Morocco ramped up the pressure in the final minutes and could have snatched an equaliser twice in a matter of minutes, as a deflected cross almost landed to their striker at the far post and then another deflection landed on the crossbar.
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This seemed to lead to a reaction from England and they had two attacks late on, with Sam Iling-Junior having a blocked shot and then firing over in quick succession, before Sam Edozie forced the Morocco goalkeeper into a fine stop with a free-kick.
But after a frantic finish, the game finished 2-1 at the Pinarar Arena.
England: 1 Tobi Oluwayemi (Celtic); 5 Reece Welch (Everton), 6 Tim Iroegbunam (Queens Park Rangers, on loan from Aston Villa), 3 Callum Doyle (Coventry City, on loan from Manchester City); 2 Ethan Ingram (West Bromwich Albion), 4 Charlie Patino (Blackpool, on loan from Arsenal), 8 Carney Chukwuemeka (Chelsea), 11 Harvey Vale (Hull City, on loan from Chelsea) (captain); 7 Malcolm Ebowei (Crystal Palace), 10 James Balagizi (Crawley Town, on loan from Liverpool), Dane Scarlett (Portsmouth, on loan from Tottenham Hotspur)
Substitutes: 18 Sam Iling-Junior (Juventus) for Vale 65, 14 Alex Scott (Bristol City) for Patino 71, 12 Daniel Oyegoke (Milton Keynes Dons, on loan from Brentford) for Ingram 71, 16 Aaron Ramsey (Norwich City, on loan from Aston Villa) for Balagizi 71, 17 Sam Edozie (Southampton) for Ebowei 71, 20 Daniel Jebbison (Sheffield United) for Scarlett 81, 15 Finley Burns (Manchester City) for Chukwuemeka 90, 19 Liam Delap (Stoke City, on loan from Manchester City) for Doyle 90+3
Substitutes not used: 13 Matthew Cox (GK), 22 Harvey Davies (Liverpool) (GK)
Head coach: Ian Foster
Goals: Charlie Patino 27, Tim Iroegbunam 67
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