Wales national under-21 football team

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Wales Under-21
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) Young Dragons
Association Football Association of Wales
Confederation UEFA (Europe)
Head coach Geraint Williams
Most caps Shaun MacDonald (25)
Top scorer Ched Evans (13)
FIFA code WAL
First colours
Second colours
First international
 England U-21 0–0 Wales U-21 Wales
(Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton; 15 December 1976)
Biggest win
Wales Wales U-21 6–2 Cyprus U-21 
(Ninian Park, Cardiff; 22 October 1993)
&
Wales Wales U-21 5–1 Luxembourg U-21 
(Parc y Scarlets, Llanelli; 31 March 2009)
Biggest defeat
 Italy U-21 8–1 Wales U-21 Wales
(Stadio Pietro Fortunati, Pavia; 5 September 2003)
UEFA U-21 Championship
Appearances None (First in n/a)
Best result 1st of 5 in Qual.
group, 2009. Lost in play off.

The Wales national under-21 football team, also known as the Wales U21s, is the national under-21 football team of Wales and is controlled by the Football Association of Wales. The team competes in the UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship, held every two years. To date Wales haven't yet qualified for the championship but in recent years have shown good form, losing in a playoff (5–4) to England in the 2009 qualifying campaign and finishing second in their group two years later, after leading their group until their last game Wales only needed a draw to qualify for the play-offs but lost 1–0 away to Italy.

The U-21 team came into existence following the realignment of UEFA's youth competitions in 1976. A goalless draw in a friendly against England at Wolverhampton Wanderers' Molineux Stadium was Wales U21s' first result.

The national under-21 team is the highest level of youth football in Wales, and is open to any players who were born in Wales or whose parents or grandparents were born in Wales. This team is for Welsh players aged 21 or under at the start of a two-year European Under-21 Football Championship campaign, so players can be, and often are, up to 23 years old. Also in existence are teams for Under-20s (for non-UEFA tournaments), Under-19s and Under 17s. As long as they are eligible, players can play at any level, making it possible to play for the U21s, senior side and again for the U21s.

Recent history[edit]

In recent decades, the team has been viewed by the Welsh national management as more of a hole to be filled than a team to be used to nurture young international players, many of the great Welsh players of recent years having not spent long in the under-21 team. Ryan Giggs only made one appearance for the under-21 team before making his senior debut against Germany the next day.

From 2004 onward however, the former Wales national football team manager John Toshack and former Wales Under 21 manager Brian Flynn used the under-21 team to create a pool of youthful Welsh talent. The team now has a much better tracking system of young Welsh players, and has seen a marked improvement in players and team results. Recent results have seen them achieve big wins against Estonia (5–1), Northern Ireland (4–0) and France (4–2).

Some of the young players who subsequently have made the step from the U21's to regular selection for the senior squad are Lewin Nyatanga, Joe Ledley, Chris Gunter, Gareth Bale, Sam Vokes, Ched Evans, Simon Church, Wayne Hennessey, David Cotterill, Neal Eardley, Andrew Crofts, David Edwards, Jack Collison, Andy King, Craig Morgan, Neil Taylor, Darcy Blake and Aaron Ramsey.

On 15 May 2008, they played a friendly against England U21s to mark the 100th match in the history of the side, losing 2–0.

A 3–0 victory against Romania in September 2008 meant that the Under-21 side finished top of their qualifying group for the first time in their history. It meant Wales would go into a two-legged play-off against England in October 2008 for a place in the finals of the 2009 UEFA U-21 Championship to be played in Sweden. Wales lost the playoff 5–4 over the course of two legs. Losing 3–2 at home in the first leg and drawing 2–2 away in the second.

Wales started their qualifying campaign for the 2013 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship with a 1-0 away win against Andorra, a 3-1 away loss against Montenegro, a 1-0 home win against Montenegro, a 1-0 home defeat against Czech Republic and a 0-0 away draw against Armenia.

In May 2012 Brian Flynn vacated his position as Wales under-21 manager at the end of his contract and in July 2012 Geraint Williams was appointed team manager [1]

Players[edit]

Latest squad[edit]

Players born on or after 1 January 1992 are eligible for the 2015 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship.

Wales squad for the 2015 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship matches against Finland and Lithuania on 5 and 9 September 2014. Daniel Alfei and Lloyd Isgrove withdrew from the squad and were replaced by Gethin Jones and Ryan Hedges respectively. Declan John was promoted to the senior team and was replaced by Jordan Evans.[2]

Caps and goals as of 9 September 2014. Players in bold have attained full international caps. Clubs as of the date of the announcement.

0#0 Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1GK Danny Ward (1993-06-22) 22 June 1993 (age 21) 6 0 England Liverpool
1GK Christian Dibble (1994-05-11) 11 May 1994 (age 20) 0 0 England Barnsley
2DF Jordan Evans (1995-09-23) 23 September 1995 (age 18) 1 0 England Fulham
2DF Morgan Fox (1993-09-21) 21 September 1993 (age 20) 7 0 England Charlton Athletic
2DF Gethin Jones (1995-10-13) 13 October 1995 (age 18) 1 0 England Everton
2DF George Ray (1993-10-13) 13 October 1993 (age 20) 5 0 England Crewe Alexandra
2DF Joe Walsh (1992-05-13) 13 May 1992 (age 22) 11 0 England Crawley Town
2DF Elliott Hewitt (1994-05-30) 30 May 1994 (age 20) 10 0 England Ipswich Town
2DF Jordan Williams (1995-11-06) 6 November 1995 (age 18) 1 0 England Liverpool
3MF Gwion Edwards (1993-03-01) 1 March 1993 (age 21) 6 1 England Crawley Town
3MF Lee Evans (1994-07-24) 24 July 1994 (age 20) 6 2 England Wolverhampton Wanderers
3MF Ryan Hedges (1995-09-07) 7 September 1995 (age 19) 2 0 Wales Swansea City
3MF Tommy O'Sullivan (1995-01-18) 18 January 1995 (age 19) 5 0 Wales Cardiff City
3MF Theo Wharton (1994-11-15) 15 November 1994 (age 19) 1 0 Wales Cardiff City
3MF Josh Sheehan (1995-03-30) 30 March 1995 (age 19) 2 0 Wales Swansea City
4FW Wes Burns (1994-11-23) 23 November 1994 (age 19) 10 3 England Bristol City
4FW Ellis Harrison (1994-01-29) 29 January 1994 (age 20) 4 1 England Bristol Rovers
4FW Bradley Reid (1995-10-15) 15 October 1995 (age 18) 1 0 England Wolverhampton Wanderers

Recent call-ups[edit]

The following players have also been called up to the Wales under-21 squad and remain eligible (clubs as of when called up).

Name DOB Club Caps (goals) Most recent call-up
Goalkeepers
David Richards (1993-12-31) 31 December 1993 (age 20) England Bristol City 0 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Connor Roberts (1992-12-08) 8 December 1992 (age 21) England Cheltenham Town 6 (0) v  England, 19 May 2014
Defenders
Declan John (1995-06-30) 30 June 1995 (age 19) Wales Cardiff City 2 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (withdrew)
Daniel Alfei (1992-02-23) 23 February 1992 (age 22) England Northampton Town 13 (2) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (withdrew)
Josh Yorwerth (1995-01-01) 1 January 1995 (age 19) Wales Cardiff City 0 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Scott Tancock (1993-12-29) 29 December 1993 (age 20) Wales Swansea City 6 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Kieron Freeman (1993-12-29) 29 December 1993 (age 20) England Derby County 15 (0) v  England, 19 May 2014
Adam Henley (1994-06-14) 14 June 1994 (age 20) England Blackburn Rovers 3 (0) v  England, 5 March 2014 (withdrew)
Jordan Holt (1994-05-04) 4 May 1994 (age 20) England Notts County 0 (0) v  San Marino, 15 October 2013
Jonathan Meades (1992-03-02) 2 March 1992 (age 22) England Oxford United 4 (0) v  Moldova, 22 March 2013
Alex Nicholson (1994-02-01) 1 February 1994 (age 20) England Preston North End 0 (0) v  Moldova, 22 March 2013
Aaron Oakley (1994-10-04) 4 October 1994 (age 19) England Swindon Town 1 (0) v Iceland Iceland, 6 February 2013
Ben Davies (1993-04-24) 24 April 1993 (age 21) Wales Swansea City 0 (0) v  Czech Republic, 10 September 2012
Tom Bender (1993-01-19) 19 January 1993 (age 21) England Millwall 4 (0) v  Andorra, 29 February 2012
Alex Evans (1992-09-17) 17 September 1992 (age 22) Unattached 0 (0) v  Czech Republic, 11 October 2011
Adam Matthews (1992-01-13) 13 January 1992 (age 22) Scotland Celtic 6 (0) v  Andorra, 29 March 2011
Midfielders
Lloyd Isgrove (1993-01-12) 12 January 1993 (age 21) England Southampton 6 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (withdrew)
Billy Waters (1994-10-15) 15 October 1994 (age 19) England Crewe Alexandra 0 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Henry Jones (1993-09-18) 18 September 1993 (age 21) Wales Swansea City 0 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Alex Bray (1995-07-25) 25 July 1995 (age 19) Wales Swansea City 0 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Josh Pritchard (1992-09-23) 23 September 1992 (age 21) England Gillingham 3 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Lee Lucas (1992-06-10) 10 June 1992 (age 22) Wales Swansea City 19 (2) v  England, 19 May 2014
George Williams (1995-09-07) 7 September 1995 (age 19) England Fulham 2 (0) v  England, 19 May 2014
Billy Bodin (1992-03-24) 24 March 1992 (age 22) England Torquay United 21 (3) v  England, 5 March 2014 (withdrew)
Emyr Huws (1993-09-30) 30 September 1993 (age 20) England Manchester City 6 (1) v  Moldova, 10 September 2013
Chris Dawson (1994-09-02) 2 September 1994 (age 20) England Leeds United 2 (0) v  Finland, 14 August 2013
Louis Thompson (1994-12-19) 19 December 1994 (age 19) England Swindon Town 0 (0) v  Moldova, 22 March 2013
Jonathan Williams (1993-10-09) 9 October 1993 (age 20) England Crystal Palace 7 (1) v Iceland Iceland, 6 February 2013
Michael Doughty (1992-11-20) 20 November 1992 (age 21) England Queens Park Rangers 1 (0) v  Czech Republic, 10 September 2012
Reece Jones (1992-07-22) 22 July 1992 (age 22) England Farnborough 0 (0) v  Hungary, 10 August 2011
Forwards
Robert Ogleby (1992-01-05) 5 January 1992 (age 22) Scotland Livingston 12 (2) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
Jake Cassidy (1993-02-09) 9 February 1993 (age 21) England Notts County 8 (0) v  Finland, 5 September 2014 (standby)
James Loveridge (1994-05-16) 16 May 1994 (age 20) Wales Swansea City 0 (0) v  England, 19 May 2014
Tom Lawrence (1994-01-13) 13 January 1994 (age 20) England Manchester United 8 (3) v  England, 19 May 2014 (withdrew)
Tom Bradshaw (1992-07-27) 27 July 1992 (age 22) England Shrewsbury Town 8 (1) v  Moldova, 10 September 2013
Elliott Chamberlain (1992-04-29) 29 April 1992 (age 22) England Gloucester City 9 (1) v  Andorra, 29 February 2012
Richard Peniket (1993-03-04) 4 March 1993 (age 21) Unattached 1 (0) v  Hungary, 10 August 2011

Fixtures and results[edit]

2015 UEFA Under-21 Championship qualification[edit]

Team
Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
 England 10 9 1 0 31 2 +29 28
 Finland 10 4 4 2 17 10 +7 16
 Moldova 10 5 1 4 12 6 +6 16
 Wales 10 3 3 4 12 13 –1 12
 Lithuania 10 2 2 6 6 19 –13 8
 San Marino 10 1 1 8 2 30 –28 4
  England Finland Lithuania Moldova San Marino Wales
England  3–0 5–0 1–0 9–0 1–0
Finland  1–1 2–2 1–0 5–0 2–2
Lithuania  0–1 0–1 0–3 2–1 1–1
Moldova  0–3 1–0 3–0 2–0 0–0
San Marino  0–4 0–0 0–1 0–3 1–0
Wales  1–3 1–5 2–0 1–0 4–0

NB: Ranking of second placed teams. Because some groups contain six teams and some five, matches against the sixth-placed team in each group are not included in the ranking of second placed teams.

All times listed here are CET (UTC+01:00).

22 March 2013
19:00
Wales  1 – 0  Moldova
Lawrence Goal 10' Report
Parc y Scarlets, Llanelli
Referee: Gunnar Jarl Jónsson (Iceland)

14 August 2013
17:00
Wales  1 – 5  Finland
Huws Goal 47' (pen.) Report Kastrati Goal 7'
Väyrynen Goal 11'30'57'
Yaghoubi Goal 39'
Nantporth, Bangor
Referee: Hugo Miguel (Portugal)

6 September 2013
20:30
San Marino  1 – 0  Wales
Biordi Goal 22' Report
Stadio Olimpico, Serravalle
Referee: Dejan Jakimovski (Macedonia)

10 September 2013
18:00
Moldova  0 – 0  Wales
Report
Sheriff Stadium, Tiraspol
Referee: Rahim Hasanov (Azerbaijan)

11 October 2013
15:00
Wales  2 – 0  Lithuania
Lawrence Goal 21' (pen.)40' (pen.) Report
Nantporth, Bangor
Referee: Ioannis Anastasiou (Cyprus)

15 October 2013
15:00
Wales  4 – 0  San Marino
Harrison Goal 44'
Lucas Goal 50'
Burns Goal 64'
Bodin Goal 84'
Report
Nantporth, Bangor
Referee: Denis Scherbakov (Belarus)

5 March 2014
19:00
England  1 – 0  Wales
Redmond Goal 56' Report
Pride Park Stadium, Derby
Referee: Nicolas Rainville (France)

19 May 2014
19:30
Wales  1 – 3  England
Edwards Goal 20' Report Redmond Goal 17'38'90+2'

5 September 2014
18:00
Finland  2–2  Wales
Lod Goal 19'
Väyrynen Goal 87'
Report Burns Goal 65'
Evans Goal 69'
Veritas Stadion, Turku
Referee: Andreas Pappas (Greece)

9 September 2014
18:00
Lithuania  1–1  Wales
Tamulevičius Goal 81' Report Evans Goal 90'
Alytus Stadium, Alytus
Referee: Ivaylo Stoyanov (Bulgaria)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Williams appointed to Wales Under 21
  2. ^ "Under 21 Squad named for UEFA Qualifiers". faw.org.uk. Football Association of Wales. 26 August 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014. 

External links[edit]