Match report: England U21 1 USA U23 0

UntitledBy Jack Wynne – Deputy Sports Editor

England started their preparations for the forthcoming Euro 2017 qualifiers with victory over USA in a friendly at Deepdale.

Substitute James Wilson broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute, sliding the ball past keeper Zach Steffen, another substitute, following some good play Duncan Watmore, also off the bench.

England U21 manager Gareth Southgate said: “the play was really encouraging, all the subs made a great impact and keeping a clean sheet was important.”

16 minutes played and Dele Alli went close for England, his chipped effort from close range just clearing the bar following Nathan Redmond’s lofted pass.

Four minutes later and keeper Jordan Pickford was called into action, pushing Mario Rodriguez’s driven shot past the post from outside the box.

Inside 26 minutes, Redmond slipped the ball to Cauley Woodrow but his effort from six yards was powered straight at keeper Cody Cropper.

On the half-hour mark and Woodrow spurned another golden opportunity, this time meeting Jordan Ibe’s cross before driving a first-time shot from six yards the wrong side of the post.

Shortly after and England continued to maintain the pressure, Redmond cutting inside before arrowing a shot which was narrowly off target.

Into the second half and Jerome Kiesewetter surged into the box before flashing the ball across the box and beyond the far post.

54 minutes gone and captain James Ward-Prowse tried his luck from distance, arrowing a shot from 30 yards but Steffen, introduced at half-time, gathered the ball with ease.

Following wholesale changes by both managers, Watmore pushed the ball past Steffen before an unmarked Wilson tapped the ball into an empty net from six yards, eighteen minutes from time.

A minute later and Wilson nearly doubled his tally, chipping the ball over Steffen from outside the box and against the post.

82 minutes played and Wilson turned provider, this time playing an intricate pass through to Watmore but he blazed the ball over in a one-on-one with the keeper.

England: Pickford (Gunn 60), Gomez (Iorfa 60), Chambers, Dier (Stephens 60), Targett (Chalobah 60), Ibe (Hause 60), Loftus-Cheek, Ward-Prowse (Forster-Caskey 60), Alli (Watmore 60), Redmond (March 60), Woodrow (Wilson 60).

USA: Cropper, Okwuonu, Miazga, O’Neill, Miller, Kiesewetter, Hyndman, Trapp, Pelosi, Hernandez, Rodriguez. Subs: Carter-Vickers, Packwood, Serna, Ariyibi, Gil, Joya, Sorto, Polster, Rubin, Tall, Horvath.

Referee: Alan Mario San (Malta)

Attendance: 10,187

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