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England U21’s – Successive defeats as European Championship exit looms

Goals from Dany Mota and Francisco Trincao ensured England’s U21’s picked up yet another defeat in the European Championship. Despite the strong England squad, it was yet another dismal showing from The Young Lions. As a result of the defeat exit at the group stage is looking ever so likely, with the chances of progression now out of their hands.

A waste of talent:

If England are to exit at the group stage, this will be the second time in two years The Young Lions have seen this fate. Both then and now, the manager was Aidy Boothroyd, and questions have to be asked if his time should be up.

Throughout the two games so far in the tournament England have managed just one shot on target. With a squad including Premier League players the quality is there, however, the end result is missing. A poor showing against Switzerland now followed by an abysmal one against Portugal.

Portugal’s first goal at least was well worked, but, the second came from a needlessly given away penalty. When this was combined with England managing just three shots throughout the game, it was The Young Lions at their very worst.

Where before hopes of championship glory existed, now a goal at the very least will do.

During the pre-tournament hype, expectations for such an exciting young crop of talent was naturally high. However, now with the football at its lowest quality, this is yet another serious disappointment.

It never seems fair to point the finger at one man for all a teams shortcomings, but it seems there is no time like the present for England to cut their losses with manager Boothroyd.

England U21 manager Aidy Boothroyd
It feels like the stopwatch is down to its last seconds for England U21 manager Aidy Boothroyd (Photo by Jurij Kodrun – The FA/The FA via Getty Images)

Are there any positives?

For all the disappointment that this campaign has been so far, it’s not all doom and gloom. Against Portugal, Aaron Ramsdale made some strong saves, and the quality is there throughout the team.

There is still hope England can get through to the knockout stages, if they can beat Croatia and Portugal beat Switzerland they could progress.

Their fate may be out of their hands but The Young Lions still need their part. It can be who dares wins in these competitions, and that’s exactly what England have once again failed to do.

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