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England national under-21 football team

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.

England Under-21
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)The Young Lions
AssociationThe Football Association
Head coachAidy Boothroyd
Most capsJames Milner (46)
Top scorerAlan Shearer &
Francis Jeffers (13)
First colours
Second colours
First international
 England 0–0 Wales 
(Wolverhampton, England; 15 December 1976)
Biggest win
 England 9–0 San Marino 
(Shrewsbury, England; 19 November 2013)
Biggest defeat
 Romania 4–0 England 
(Ploieşti, Romania; 14 October 1980)
 England 0–4 Spain 
(Birmingham, England; 27 February 2001)
 Germany 4–0 England 
(Malmö, Sweden; 29 June 2009)
UEFA U-21 Championship
Appearances15 (first in 1978)
Best resultWinners: (2) 1982, 1984

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. It is also possible to play for one country at youth level and another at senior level (providing the player has not played a senior competitive game in his previous country.)

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 new Wembley Stadium, also a world record attendance for a U21 game.[1] The match was one of the required two 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 staffEdit

Head coachEdit

Tenure Head Coach/Manager
1977–1990   Dave Sexton
1990–1993   Lawrie McMenemy
1994–1996   Dave Sexton
1996–1999   Peter Taylor
1999   Peter Reid
1999–2001   Howard Wilkinson
2001–2004   David Platt
2004–2007   Peter Taylor
2007–2013   Stuart Pearce
2013–2016   Gareth Southgate
2016–[4]   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 leaving his job at 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] In February 2017, Boothroyd was confirmed as the permanent manager.[10]

U21 Coaching staffEdit

Position Staff
Manager   Aidy Boothroyd
Assistant Manager   Lee Carsley
Goalkeeping Coach   Timothy Dittmer

Source:[citation needed]

Competitive recordEdit

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 a 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, reached the last 4 in 2017, before again exiting at the group stage in 2019.

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
  1978 Semi-Finals 4th of 8 4 1 2 1 4 4 4 4 0 0 17 2 Sexton
  1980 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 1 1 2 4 4 4 4 0 0 11 2 Sexton
  1982 Champions 1st of 8 6 3 2 1 11 8 6 4 1 1 12 5 Sexton
  1984 Champions 1st of 8 6 5 0 1 13 3 6 5 0 1 13 4 Sexton
  1986 Semi-Finals 4th of 8 4 1 2 1 3 4 6 3 2 1 9 3 Sexton
  1988 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 2 1 1 6 6 4 1 3 0 7 3 Sexton
  1990 Did not qualify 6 4 1 1 10 5 Sexton
  1992 Did not qualify 6 3 1 2 11 5 McMenemy
  1994 Did not qualify 10 4 3 3 20 8 McMenemy
  1996 Did not qualify 8 6 1 1 13 4 Sexton
  1998 Did not qualify 10 6 3 1 11 5 Taylor
  2000 Group Stage 5th of 8 3 1 0 2 6 4 9 8 0 1 26 3 Taylor, Reid, Wilkinson[11]
  2002 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 1 0 2 4 6 8 5 2 1 18 8 Wilkinson Platt[12]
  2004 Did not qualify 8 3 2 3 14 10 Platt
  2006 Did not qualify 12 6 4 2 23 10 Taylor
  2007 Semi-Finals 3rd of 8 4 1 3 0 5 3 4 3 1 0 8 4 Taylor, Pearce[13]
  2009 Runners-Up 2nd of 8 5 2 3 0 8 9 10 8 2 0 22 5 Pearce
  2011 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 0 2 1 2 3 10 6 3 1 17 8 Pearce
  2013 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 0 0 3 1 5 10 9 0 1 26 3 Pearce
  2015 Group Stage 7th of 8 3 1 0 2 2 4 12 11 1 0 35 4 Southgate
  2017 Semi-Finals 3rd of 12 4 2 2 0 7 3 8 6 2 0 20 3 Southgate, Boothroyd[14]
    2019 Group Stage 9th of 12 3 0 1 2 6 9 10 8 2 0 23 4 Boothroyd
Total 2 titles 15/22 59 21 19 19 82 75 171 117 34 20 366 108

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

*Draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.

Results and fixturesEdit

2019 UEFA European Under-21 ChampionshipEdit

QualificationEdit

Group stageEdit
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification            
1   England 10 8 2 0 23 4 +19 26 Final tournament 0–0 2–1 3–1 3–0 7–0
2   Netherlands 10 5 3 2 21 6 +15 18 1–1 3–0 1–2 3–0 8–0
3   Ukraine 10 5 2 3 18 12 +6 17 0–2 1–1 3–1 3–2 1–0
4   Scotland 10 4 2 4 13 13 0 14 0–2 2–0 0–2 1–1 3–0
5   Latvia 10 0 4 6 5 18 −13 4 1–2 0–3 1–1 0–2 0–0
6   Andorra 10 0 3 7 1 28 −27 3 0–1 0–1 0–6 1–1 0–0
Updated to match(es) played on unknown. Source: UEFA

RecordsEdit

Leading appearancesEdit

Rank Player Club(s) U-21 Caps
1 James Milner Leeds United, Newcastle United, Aston Villa 46
2 Nathaniel Chalobah Chelsea, Watford 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, Hamburger SV 30
8 Scott Carson Leeds United, Liverpool 29
Steven Taylor Newcastle United 29
Danny Rose Tottenham Hotspur 29

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.

Leading goalscorersEdit

Rank Player Club(s) U-21 Goals
1 Alan Shearer Southampton 13
Francis Jeffers Everton, Arsenal
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
James Milner Leeds United, Newcastle United, Aston Villa
Dominic Solanke Chelsea, Liverpool, Bournemouth
8 Harry Kane Tottenham Hotspur 8
Mark Hateley Coventry City, Portsmouth
Lewis Baker Chelsea
Carl Cort Wimbledon
Tammy Abraham Chelsea

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.

PlayersEdit

Current squadEdit

Players born on or after 1 January 1998 will be eligible until the completion of the 2021 UEFA European Under-21 Championship.[15]

The following players were named in the squad for the 2021 UEFA European Under-21 Championship Qualifiers, played between 6th and 9th September 2019.[16]

Caps and goals updated as of 9 September 2019 after the match against   Kosovo. Names in bold denote players who have been capped for the senior team.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
22 1GK Ellery Balcombe (1999-10-15) 15 October 1999 (age 19) 0 0   Brentford
1 1GK Aaron Ramsdale (1998-05-14) 14 May 1998 (age 21) 3 0   AFC Bournemouth
1GK Nathan Trott (1998-11-21) 21 November 1998 (age 20) 0 0   AFC Wimbledon (on loan from West Ham United)

2 2DF Max Aarons (2000-01-04) 4 January 2000 (age 19) 2 0   Norwich City
4 2DF Trevoh Chalobah (1999-07-05) 5 July 1999 (age 20) 2 0   Huddersfield Town (on loan from Chelsea)
5 2DF Ben Godfrey (1998-01-15) 15 January 1998 (age 21) 2 0   Norwich City
15 2DF Marc Guehi (2000-07-13) 13 July 2000 (age 19) 2 0   Chelsea
18 2DF James Justin (1998-02-23) 23 February 1998 (age 21) 1 0   Leicester City
3 2DF Jonathan Panzo (2000-08-25) 25 August 2000 (age 19) 1 0   Cercle Brugge (on loan from Monaco)
11 2DF Steven Sessegnon (2000-05-18) 18 May 2000 (age 19) 2 0   Fulham
2DF Ben Wilmot (1999-11-04) 4 November 1999 (age 19) 0 0   Swansea City

17 3MF Todd Cantwell (1998-02-27) 27 February 1998 (age 21) 1 0   Norwich City
6 3MF Tom Davies (1998-06-30) 30 June 1998 (age 21) 14 1   Everton
10 3MF Phil Foden (2000-05-28) 28 May 2000 (age 19) 11 3   Manchester City
8 3MF Morgan Gibbs-White (2000-01-27) 27 January 2000 (age 19) 3 0   Wolverhampton Wanderers
20 3MF Eberechi Eze (1998-06-29) 29 June 1998 (age 21) 0 0   Queens Park Rangers
12 3MF Omar Richards (1998-02-15) 15 February 1998 (age 21) 0 0   Reading
16 3MF Oliver Skipp (2000-09-16) 16 September 2000 (age 19) 0 0   Tottenham Hotspur
3MF Grady Diangana (1998-04-19) 19 April 1998 (age 21) 0 0   West Bromwich Albion (on loan from West Ham United)

19 4FW Rhian Brewster (2000-04-01) 1 April 2000 (age 19) 2 0   Liverpool
23 4FW Mason Greenwood (2001-10-01) 1 October 2001 (age 17) 2 0   Manchester United
9 4FW Eddie Nketiah (1999-05-30) 30 May 1999 (age 20) 6 4   Leeds United (on loan from Arsenal)
7 4FW Reiss Nelson (1999-12-10) 10 December 1999 (age 19) 8 4   Arsenal

Recent call upsEdit

The following players have previously been called up to the England under-21 squad in the last year and remain eligible.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
DF Jay Dasilva (1998-04-22) 22 April 1998 (age 21) 13 0   Bristol City 2019 U-21 Euros, June 2019
DF Lloyd Kelly (1998-10-01) 1 October 1998 (age 20) 4 0   AFC Bournemouth 2019 U-21 Euros, June 2019

MF Joe Willock (1999-08-20) 20 August 1999 (age 20) 0 0   Arsenal v.   Turkey,   Kosovo 6-9 September 2019 INJ
MF Dwight McNeil (1999-11-22) 22 November 1999 (age 19) 0 0   Burnley v.   Turkey,   Kosovo 6-9 September 2019 INJ
MF Ryan Sessegnon (2000-05-18) 18 May 2000 (age 19) 10 0   Tottenham Hotspur 2019 U-21 Euros, June 2019
MF Mason Mount (1999-01-10) 10 January 1999 (age 20) 4 1   Chelsea 2019 U-21 Euros, June 2019

FW Callum Hudson-Odoi (2000-11-07) 7 November 2000 (age 18) 0 0   Chelsea v.   Poland, 21 March 2019 SEN
  • INJ Player withdrew from the squad before any games had been played.
  • SEN Player withdrew from the squad due to a call up to the senior team.

Past squadsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ BBC News – Wembley opener attracts thousands
  2. ^ "Wembley game 'sold out' in hours". BBC News. 13 March 2007. Retrieved 22 September 2017.
  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 22 September 2017.
  5. ^ "Pearce named England U21 manager". BBC Sport. 19 July 2007. Retrieved 22 September 2017.
  6. ^ "Stuart Pearce: England Under-21 boss to leave role". BBC Sport. 18 June 2013. Retrieved 22 September 2017.
  7. ^ "Roy Hodgson and Ray Lewington to manage England Under-21s against Scotland". thefa.com. Archived from the original on 3 August 2013. 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. Retrieved 22 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Aidy Boothroyd takes permanent charge of England Under-21 team". BBC Sport. 3 February 2017. Retrieved 11 November 2017.
  11. ^ Taylor managed the first five qualifiers, Reid managed one: Wilkinson managed the remainder of qualification and the finals campaign.
  12. ^ Wilkinson resigned after the first five qualifiers, Platt managed the remainder of qualification and the finals campaign.
  13. ^ Taylor managed the qualification campaign. He left before the tournament and was replaced by Pearce.
  14. ^ Southgate managed the first six qualifiers, while Boothroyd managed the rest of the qualifiers and the finals campaign.
  15. ^ "Regulations of the UEFA European Under-21 Championship 2019-21" (PDF). UEFA. Retrieved 21 August 2019.
  16. ^ "ENGLAND U21S KICK-OFF A NEW CAMPAIGN AND AIDY BOOTHROYD HAS PICKED HIS SQUAD". The Football Association. 30 August 2019. Retrieved 30 August 2019.

External linksEdit