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Published 27 May 2023 4 min read
Men's U17

Report: England MU17s 0-1 France

Written by:

Chris Swoffer

Ryan Garry's Young Lions suffer heartache in Hungary as a late penalty sees them exit at the hands of France

England men’s under-17s’ EURO challenge was brought to a cruel end on Saturday evening, as they narrowly lost to France in the quarter-final.

The Young Lions were every bit the equal to their opponents, who are the defending U17 EURO champions, across the game only for a late penalty to scupper their progress.

However, it’s not the end for Ryan Garry and his team in Hungary just yet, as they have one more game to go in the shape of a play-off against Switzerland for a spot at the FIFA U17 World Cup later this year after qualifying as one of the two beaten quarter-finalists with the best record from the group stages.

While that's a consolation and a chance for another opportunity for the Young Lions to increase their international experience later this year, it won't take away the disappointment of defeat on the night despite France being the brighter of the teams in the early stages without overly threatening Tommy Setford’s goal.

England also had to thank captain Lakyle Sanuel for keeping them level thanks to an unbelievable goal-line clearance to turn a close-range header over the bar.

Setford then produced a smart save on the half-hour mark to turn Yvann Titi’s shot around the post as Les Bleus pushed for the opener.

But it was England who ended the first half on top, as Michael Golding’s long-range shot forced a good save from French ‘keeper Mathiys Niflore, before the Young Lions came even closer and should really have gone in with the lead at half time, as Justin Oboavwoduo saw his shot cannon back off the bar after he’d raced clear on goal in stoppage time.
27 May 2023 2:48

Highlights: France 1-0 England

Myles Lewis-Skelly battles for the ball against Les Bleus
Myles Lewis-Skelly battles for the ball against Les Bleus
And there was still time for another chance seconds later, as the Manchester City man fired agonisingly wide after the ball dropped to him in the box.

England emerged for the second period with a similar intensity too, with Tyler Dibling firing a shot over after substitute Zak Lovelace had picked him out.

Lovelace then came close, shooting wide just before the hour mark after Ethan Nwaneri had played him through as England began to exert more pressure in the quest for a breakthrough.

But it was France who nicked it at the death, when Samuel was judged to have handballed in the area at the expense of a penalty with two minutes of normal time remaining.

Mathis Lambourde stepped up and gave Setford no chance by firing into the top corner and sending his team into the semi-finals.

For England, attention will now turn to Switzerland with the teams having already met once in this competition in their final group game earlier in the week.

England: 1 Tommy Setford (Ajax), 2 Josh Acheampong (Chelsea), 4 Myles Lewis-Skelly (Arsenal), 5 Lakyle Samuel (Manchester City) (c), 6 Ishé Samuels-Smith (Everton), 7 Justin Oboavwoduo (Manchester City), 9 Leon Chiwome (Wolverhampton Wanderers), 10 Michael Golding (Chelsea), 11 Ethan Nwaneri (Arsenal), 12 Jayden Meghoma (Southampton), 17 Tyler Dibling (Southampton)

Substitutes: 19 Zakariya Lovelace (Glasgow Rangers) for Chiwome 43, 14 Isaiah Dada-Mascoll (Manchester City) for Lewis-Skelly 46, 20 Kadan Young (Aston Villa) for Dibling 70, 8 Archie Gray (Leeds United) for Acheampong 89

Substitutes not used: 3 Somto Boniface (Chelsea), 13 Ted Curd (Chelsea), 15 Mofe Jemide (Crystal Palace), 16 Finley McAllister (Manchester United), 18 Kiano Dyer (Chelsea),

Head coach: Ryan Garry