With all the negative press surrounding football and tournaments lately I’m sure everyone will be hoping for a memorable European Under-21 Championships for all the right reasons when the event gets underway next Wednesday.
And with England being one of the eight teams taking part there might be even more reason to be cheerful come the end tournament 2 weeks later, which is being held in Czech Republic.
England have won this Biennial event twice before, although this was back in 1982 and 1984 (as well as being runners up in 2009), but hopes are high with Head Coach Gareth Southgate taking a strong over featuring Premiership regulars Calum Chambers, James Ward-Prowse, Carl Jenkinson, Jon Stones, as well as a strike force of Saido Berahino who has 10 goals in 13 appearances for the U-21’s, new Liverpool signing Danny Ings, and PFA Young Player Of The Year and second top scorer in the Premier League Harry Kane.
The trophy is really up for grabs too, as the reigning champions from the last 2 tournaments have not even qualified for this one, as this tournament only allows automatic qualification to the host country, and due to this the mighty Spain were beaten in the play-offs by Serbia.
If England are to win they will have to come through what is most certainly the tougher of the two groups, as they face Portugal, Sweden, and 5 time winners Italy, and they will have to undoubtedly do better than last time where they went out without even picking up so much as a point.
England’s Tournament Squad