England national under-21 football team

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England Under-21
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) The Young Lions
Association The Football Association
Head coach Aidy Boothroyd
Most caps James Milner (46)
Top scorer Alan Shearer &
Francis Jeffers (13)
First colours
Second colours
First international
England England U-21 0–0 Wales U-21 Wales
(Molineux, Wolverhampton; 15 December 1976)
Biggest win
England England U-21 9–0 San Marino U-21 San Marino
(New Meadow, Shrewsbury; 19 November 2013)
Biggest defeat
Romania Romania U-21 4–0 England U-21 England
(Ploieşti, Romania; 14 October 1980)
&
England England U-21 0–4 Spain U-21 Spain
(St Andrews, Birmingham; 27 February 2001)
&
Germany Germany U-21 4–0 England U-21 England
(Malmö New Stadium, Malmö; 29 June 2009)
UEFA U-21 Championship
Appearances 14 (first in 1978)
Best result Winners: (2) 1982, 1984

England's national Under-21 football team, also known as England Under-21s or England U21(s), is considered to be the feeder team for the England national football team.

This team is for English players aged under 21 at the start of the calendar year in which a two-year European Under-21 Football Championship campaign begins, so some players can remain with the squad until the age of 23. As long as they are eligible, players can play for England at any level, making it possible to play for the U21s, senior side, and again for the U21s, as Jack Butland, Harry Kane, Calum Chambers and John Stones have done recently. It is also possible to play for one country at youth level and another at senior level (providing the player is eligible).

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

England U21s do not have a permanent home. They play in stadia dotted all around England, in an attempt to encourage younger fans in all areas of the country to get behind England. Because of the lower demand compared to the senior national team, smaller grounds can be used. The record attendance for an England U21 match was set on 24 March 2007, when England U21 played Italy U21 in front of a crowd of just under 60,000 at the brand new Wembley Stadium, also a world record attendance for a U21 game.[1] The match was one of the required two "ramp up" events the stadium hosted in order to gain its safety certificate in time for its full-capacity opening for the 2007 FA Cup Final in May.[2][3]

Coaching staff[edit]

Head coach[edit]

Tenure Head Coach/Manager
1977–1990 England Dave Sexton
1990–1993 England Lawrie McMenemy
1994–1996 England Dave Sexton
1996–1999 England Peter Taylor
1999 England Peter Reid
1999–2001 England Howard Wilkinson
2001–2004 England David Platt
2004–2007 England Peter Taylor
2007–2013 England Stuart Pearce
2013–2016 England Gareth Southgate
2016–[4] England Aidy Boothroyd

The original and most successful coach is Dave Sexton, who led the U21s from 1977 to 1990. In this period he combined his duties with managing the top-flight clubs Manchester United (1977–1981) and Coventry City (1981–1983). After Coventry he took a position within the FA as their first Technical Director, at Lilleshall. He handed over U21 responsibilities to England manager Graham Taylor's assistant Lawrie McMenemy for three years before resuming control from 1994 to 1996.

Peter Taylor took over in 1996 and, although never winning a tournament, his teams had an excellent record. He was controversially removed from the position in early 1999, however, and replaced initially by Peter Reid, who resigned after just one match in charge to dedicate more time to his other job as manager of Sunderland. Howard Wilkinson took over afterwards, yet could only produce four wins in ten competitive matches and quit after a year and a half in charge. David Platt took charge upon his departure from Nottingham Forest. Platt was U21 boss from 2001 to 2004, but had little success before Taylor's return. Taylor left in January 2007, as the senior national manager Steve McClaren wanted the U21s to have a full-time manager. Taylor, at the time, was combining his duties with his role as Crystal Palace boss.

On 1 February 2007, Manchester City manager Stuart Pearce was appointed as head coach on a part-time basis until after the European Championships in the summer of 2007. Nigel Pearson, Newcastle United's assistant manager, agreed to become Pearce's assistant. Their first match in charge was a 2–2 draw against Spain on 6 February 2007 at Derby County's Pride Park Stadium. For the match against Italy Nigel Pearson took charge as Stuart Pearce had club commitments. Steve Wigley assisted Pearson.

Pearce was dismissed as Manchester City manager on 14 May 2007, before the 2007 European Championships, but on 19 July 2007 he was named full-time U21s coach.[5] He remained in the post until June 2013, when it was announced that his contract would not be renewed.[6] On 31 July, the FA announced that England senior manager Roy Hodgson would take charge of an England U21 friendly match against Scotland at Bramall Lane,[7] the match ended in a 6–0 win for Hodgson's side.[8] Former England international Gareth Southgate was made manager of the under-21 team on 22 August.[9]

In September 2016, Southgate was appointed to the temporary position of caretaker manager of the England senior side after the departure of Sam Allardyce. With Southgate overseeing the main team for four games, Aidy Boothroyd, the England under-20 manager, was appointed caretaker manager of the under-21s until Southgate's return.[4]

U21 Coaching staff[edit]

Position Staff
Manager England Aidy Boothroyd
Assistant Manager England Colin Cooper
Goalkeeping Coach England Timothy Dittmer

Source:[citation needed]

Competitive Record[edit]

As a European U21 team, England compete for the European Championship, with the finals every odd-numbered year, formerly even-numbered years. There is no Under-21 World Cup, although there is an Under-20 World Cup. For the first six (1978–1988) European Under-21 Football Championships, England did well, getting knocked out in the semi-finals on four occasions and winning the competition in 1982 and 1984. Then, as one might expect with a rapid turnover of players, followed a lean period.

After losing to France in the 1988 semi final, England then failed to qualify for the last eight for five whole campaigns. In the qualifying stages for the 1998 tournament, England won their group, but fate was not on their side. Because there were nine groups, and only eight places, the two group-winning nations with worst records had to play-off to eliminate one of them. England lost the away leg of this extra qualifying round and were eliminated on away goals to Greece. In effect, England finished ninth in the competition despite losing only one of their ten matches.

England qualified for the 2000 finals comfortably. Under the 1996-appointed Peter Taylor England won every match without conceding a goal. But with 3 matches to play, Taylor was replaced in a controversial manner by Howard Wilkinson, who won the next two matches. The three goals conceded in the 3–1 defeat to group runners-up Poland were the only blemish on the team's qualifying record. England got knocked out in the group stage of the European Championship finals in 2000 under Wilkinson.

After enlisting former international star David Platt as manager, England qualified for the 2002 tournament in Switzerland. Again England did poorly in the group stage. Platt's England failed to qualify for the 2004 tournament and he was replaced by the returning Peter Taylor. Taylor's England qualified from the group but lost to a strong France team in a two-legged playoff and failed to qualify for the 2006 tournament.

The next campaign started shortly after the 2006 finals – the qualification stage of the 2007 competition. UEFA decided to shift the tournament forward to avoid a clash with senior tournaments taking place in even-numbered years. The qualification stage was heavily reduced, being completed in a year's less time. In a 3-team qualification group, England qualified over Switzerland and Moldova, and then won a two-legged play-off with Germany to qualify for the finals to be held in the Netherlands. At the tournament, England progressed through to the semi-finals where they led for the majority of the match against the hosts. However, after a late equaliser and a marathon penalty shootout, England were eliminated.

In 2009, England finished as runners-up, losing 4–0 to Germany in the final.

England finished second in their qualifying group for the 2011 championships in Denmark. They subsequently defeated Romania in the play-offs to qualify for the finals tournament, where they were knocked out in the group stage after a 2-1 defeat to the Czech Republic. England also subsequently exited the 2013 and 2015 Finals tournaments at the group stage.

UEFA European Under-21 Championship record UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualification record Manager(s)
Year Round Position Pld W D * L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
Europe 1978 Semi-Finals 4th of 8 4 1 2 1 4 4 4 4 0 0 17 2 Sexton
Europe 1980 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 1 1 2 4 4 4 4 0 0 11 2 Sexton
Europe 1982 Champions 1st of 8 6 3 2 1 11 8 6 4 1 1 12 5 Sexton
Europe 1984 Champions 1st of 8 6 5 0 1 13 3 6 5 0 1 13 4 Sexton
Europe 1986 Semi-Finals 4th of 8 4 1 2 1 3 4 6 3 2 1 9 3 Sexton
Europe 1988 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 2 1 1 6 6 4 1 3 0 7 3 Sexton
Europe 1990 Did not qualify 6 4 1 1 10 5 Sexton
Europe 1992 Did not qualify 6 3 1 2 11 5 McMenemy
France 1994 Did not qualify 10 4 3 3 20 8 McMenemy
Spain 1996 Did not qualify 8 6 1 1 13 4 Sexton
Romania 1998 Did not qualify 10 6 3 1 11 5 Taylor
Slovakia 2000 Group Stage 5th of 8 3 1 0 2 6 4 9 8 0 1 26 3 Taylor, Reid, Wilkinson[10]
Switzerland 2002 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 1 0 2 4 6 8 5 2 1 18 8 Wilkinson Platt[11]
Germany 2004 Did not qualify 8 3 2 3 14 10 Platt
Portugal 2006 Did not qualify 12 6 4 2 23 10 Taylor
Netherlands 2007 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 1 3 0 5 3 4 3 1 0 8 4 Taylor, Pearce[12]
Sweden 2009 Runners-Up 2nd of 8 5 2 3 0 8 9 10 8 2 0 22 5 Pearce
Denmark 2011 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 0 2 1 2 3 10 6 3 1 17 8 Pearce
Israel 2013 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 0 0 3 1 5 10 9 0 1 26 3 Pearce
Czech Republic 2015 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 1 0 2 2 4 12 11 1 0 35 4 Southgate
Poland 2017 Semi-Finals 3rd of 12 4 2 2 0 7 3 8 6 2 0 20 3 Southgate, Boothroyd[13]
Total 2 titles 14/21 53 19 17 17 71 65 161 109 32 20 343 103

Note: The year of the tournament represents the year in which it ends.

*Draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.

Results and fixtures[edit]

2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship[edit]

Qualification[edit]

Group stage[edit]
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1  England 8 6 2 0 20 3 +17 20 Final tournament 6–1 3–1 3–0 5–0
2  Norway 8 5 1 2 12 10 +2 16 Play-offs 0–1 2–1 2–1 2–0
3   Switzerland 8 3 3 2 11 8 +3 12 1–1 1–1 3–0 3–1
4  Kazakhstan 8 1 1 6 3 14 −11 4 0–1 0–3 0–1 0–0
5  Bosnia and Herzegovina 8 0 3 5 2 13 −11 3 0–0 0–1 0–0 1–2
Source: UEFA

Records[edit]

Leading appearances[edit]

Rank Player Club(s) U-21 Caps
1 James Milner Leeds United, Newcastle United, Aston Villa 46
2 Nathaniel Chalobah Chelsea 40
3 Nathan Redmond Birmingham City, Norwich City, Southampton 38
4 Tom Huddlestone Derby County, Tottenham Hotspur 33
Fabrice Muamba Birmingham City, Bolton Wanderers 33
6 James Ward-Prowse Southampton 31
7 Michael Mancienne Chelsea, Hamburg 30
8 Scott Carson Leeds United, Liverpool 29
Steven Taylor Newcastle United 29
Danny Rose Tottenham Hotspur 29
11 Jack Butland Birmingham City, Stoke City 28

Note: Club(s) represents the permanent clubs during the player's time in the Under-21s. Those players in bold are still eligible to play for the team at the moment.

Leading goalscorers[edit]

Rank Player Club(s) U-21 Goals
1 Alan Shearer Southampton 13
Francis Jeffers Everton, Arsenal 13
3 Saido Berahino West Bromwich Albion 11
4 Nathan Redmond Birmingham City, Norwich City, Southampton 10
5 Darren Bent Ipswich Town, Charlton Athletic 9
Frank Lampard West Ham United 9
James Milner Leeds United, Newcastle United, Aston Villa 9
8 Harry Kane Tottenham Hotspur 8
Mark Hateley Coventry City, Portsmouth 8
Lewis Baker Chelsea, Vitesse 8
Carl Cort Wimbledon 8
12 Mark Robins Manchester United 7
Shola Ameobi Newcastle United 7
Jermain Defoe West Ham United 7
Ruben Loftus-Cheek Chelsea 7

Note: Club(s) represents the permanent clubs during the player's time in the Under-21s. Those players in bold are still eligible to play for the team at the moment.

Current squad[edit]

Players born on or after 1 January 1994 are eligible until the end of the 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship.[citation needed] Names in italics denote players who have been capped for the senior team.

The following players were named in the squad for the 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship in June 2017. Caps and goals updated as of 27 June 2017.[14]

0#0 Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1 1GK Jordan Pickford (1994-03-07) 7 March 1994 (age 23) 14 0 England Everton
13 1GK Angus Gunn (1996-01-22) 22 January 1996 (age 21) 6 0 England Manchester City
21 1GK Jonathan Mitchell (1994-11-24) 24 November 1994 (age 22) 1 0 England Derby County

5 2DF Calum Chambers (1995-01-20) 20 January 1995 (age 22) 22 0 England Arsenal
12 2DF Matt Targett (1995-09-08) 8 September 1995 (age 21) 13 0 England Southampton
18 2DF Dominic Iorfa (1995-06-24) 24 June 1995 (age 22) 13 0 England Ipswich Town (on loan from Wolverhampton Wanderers)
17 2DF Kortney Hause (1995-07-16) 16 July 1995 (age 22) 10 0 England Wolverhampton Wanderers
6 2DF Jack Stephens (1994-01-27) 27 January 1994 (age 23) 8 1 England Southampton
3 2DF Ben Chilwell (1996-12-21) 21 December 1996 (age 20) 7 0 England Leicester City
23 2DF Alfie Mawson (1994-01-19) 19 January 1994 (age 23) 6 1 Wales Swansea City
2 2DF Mason Holgate (1996-10-22) 22 October 1996 (age 20) 6 0 England Everton
16 2DF Rob Holding (1995-09-20) 20 September 1995 (age 21) 5 0 England Arsenal

4 3MF Nathaniel Chalobah (1994-12-12) 12 December 1994 (age 22) 40 1 England Watford
8 3MF James Ward-Prowse (1994-11-01) 1 November 1994 (age 22) 31 6 England Southampton
19 3MF Will Hughes (1995-04-07) 7 April 1995 (age 22) 23 2 England Watford
10 3MF Lewis Baker (1995-04-25) 25 April 1995 (age 22) 17 8 England Middlesbrough (on loan from Chelsea)
15 3MF John Swift (1995-06-23) 23 June 1995 (age 22) 13 1 England Reading
20 3MF Jack Grealish (1995-09-10) 10 September 1995 (age 21) 7 2 England Aston Villa

11 4FW Nathan Redmond (1994-03-06) 6 March 1994 (age 23) 38 10 England Southampton
7 4FW Demarai Gray (1996-06-28) 28 June 1996 (age 21) 11 4 England Leicester City
9 4FW Tammy Abraham (1997-10-02) 2 October 1997 (age 19) 10 3 England Swansea City (on loan from Chelsea)
22 4FW Cauley Woodrow (1994-12-02) 2 December 1994 (age 22) 9 3 England Fulham
14 4FW Jacob Murphy (1995-02-24) 24 February 1995 (age 22) 6 1 England Newcastle United

Recent call ups[edit]

The following players have also been called up to the England under-21 squad and remain eligible:

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Freddie Woodman (1997-03-04) 4 March 1997 (age 20) 1 0 England Newcastle United v.  Bosnia and Herzegovina, 11 October 2016[15]

DF Brendan Galloway (1996-03-17) 17 March 1996 (age 21) 3 0 England Sunderland (on loan from Everton) v.  Italy, 10 November 2016[16]
DF Joe Gomez (1997-05-23) 23 May 1997 (age 20) 4 0 England Liverpool v.  Denmark, 27 March 2017[17]
DF Ola Aina (1996-10-08) 8 October 1996 (age 20) 0 0 England Hull City) (on loan from Chelsea) v.   Switzerland, 16 November 2015[18]

MF Ruben Loftus-Cheek (1996-01-23) 23 January 1996 (age 21) 17 7 England Crystal Palace (on loan from Chelsea) 2017 European Championship PRE
MF Izzy Brown (1997-01-07) 7 January 1997 (age 20) 0 0 England Brighton & Hove Albion (on loan from Chelsea) 2017 European Championship PRE
MF Kasey Palmer (1996-11-09) 9 November 1996 (age 20) 4 0 England Huddersfield Town (on loan from Chelsea) Toulon Tournament, 18–29 May 2016[19]
MF Dele Alli (1996-04-11) 11 April 1996 (age 21) 2 0 England Tottenham Hotspur v.  Norway, 7 September 2015[20]
MF Josh Onomah (1997-04-27) 27 April 1997 (age 20) 1 1 England Aston Villa (on loan from Tottenham Hotspur) v.  Bosnia and Herzegovina, 11 October 2016[15]
MF Harry Winks (1996-02-02) 2 February 1996 (age 21) 2 0 England Tottenham Hotspur v.  Denmark, 27 March 2017[17]

FW Patrick Roberts (1997-02-05) 5 February 1997 (age 20) 0 0 England Manchester City 2017 European Championship PRE
FW Dominic Solanke (1997-09-14) 14 September 1997 (age 19) 3 0 England Liverpool v.   Switzerland, 26 March 2016[21]
FW Marcus Rashford (1997-10-31) 31 October 1997 (age 19) 1 3 England Manchester United v.  Norway, 6 September 2016[22]
  • INJ Player withdrew from the squad before any games had been played.

Past squads[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ BBC News – Wembley opener attracts thousands
  2. ^ BBC News – Wembley game 'sold out' in hours
  3. ^ The Guardian – Early set-back on Wembley's big day
  4. ^ a b Veevers, Nicholas (28 September 2016). "Aidy Boothroyd set to take on England Under-21s position". The Football Association. Retrieved 2 October 2016. 
  5. ^ "Pearce named England U21 manager". BBC Sport. 19 July 2007. Retrieved 17 July 2007. 
  6. ^ "Stuart Pearce: England Under-21 boss to leave role". BBC Sport. 18 June 2013. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  7. ^ "Roy Hodgson and Ray Lewington to manage England Under-21s against Scotland". thefa.com. Retrieved 31 July 2013. 
  8. ^ "England Under-21s thrash Scotland 6-0 in friendly". BBC News. 13 August 2013. 
  9. ^ "Gareth Southgate named England Under-21 boss". BBC News. 22 August 2013. 
  10. ^ Taylor managed the first five qualifiers, Reid managed one: Wilkinson managed the remainder of qualification and the finals campaign.
  11. ^ Wilkinson resigned after the first five qualifiers, Platt managed the remainder of qualification and the finals campaign.
  12. ^ Taylor managed the qualification campaign. He left before the tournament and was replaced by Pearce.
  13. ^ Southgate managed the first six qualifiers, while Boothroyd managed the rest of the qualifiers and the finals campaign.
  14. ^ "YOUNG LIONS SET FOR SGP". 25 May 2017. Retrieved 27 May 2017. 
  15. ^ a b "ENGLAND U21S SQUAD NAMED FOR KAZAKHSTAN AND BOSNIA GAMES". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 
  16. ^ "A 23-MAN GROUP TO TAKE ON ITALY IN SOUTHAMPTON AND FRANCE IN PARIS HAS BEEN NAMED". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 
  17. ^ a b "AIDY BOOTHROYD NAMES U21S SQUAD TO FACE GERMANY AND DENMARK". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 
  18. ^ "Baily Cargill and Ben Chilwell called up by England U21s". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 November 2015. 
  19. ^ "ENGLAND U21S SQUAD NAMED FOR TOULON TOURNAMENT". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 
  20. ^ "ENGLAND U21S SQUAD NAMED FOR USA AND NORWAY FIXTURES". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 
  21. ^ "Three new faces in England U21s squad to face Switzerland". The Football Association. Retrieved 17 May 2016. 
  22. ^ "ENGLAND UNDER-21S SQUAD NAMED FOR EURO QUALIFIER WITH NORWAY". The Football Association. Retrieved 16 March 2017. 

External links[edit]