England U20s beat Mexico

Monday 5 June 2017  60 Comments  [Jump to last]
England and their Everton contingent are into the semi-finals of the Under-20 World Cup thanks to a 1-0 win over Mexico.

The Young Lions edged their North American opponents with Dominic Solanke's goal early in the second half and hung on to win despite Josh Onomah being sent off with a quarter of an hour still to play.

Solanke, who has just secured a move from Chelsea to Liverpool, was selected ahead of Dominic Calvert-Lewin and justified the selection with the winner.

Blues defender Jonjoe Kenny had been a valuable provider of assists while Kieran Dowell, Calvert-Lewin and Ademola Lookman all contributed goals that helped the Young Lions top Group A and then beat Costa Rica in the round of 16 to get the last eight.

England now play Italy, the winners of the earlier kick-off against Zambia which they won 3-2.

Venezuela, conquerers of the United States after extra time on Saturday, and Uruguay, who beat Portugal on penalties, had already made it through to the semi-finals over the weekend.  


Reader Comments (60)

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Neil Wood
1 Posted 05/06/2017 at 07:09:09
Anyone know where I can watch it?
Gary Russell
2 Posted 05/06/2017 at 07:26:54
I'll be watching here Neil, I hope...

http://cricfree.sc/football-live-stream

Iain Johnston
3 Posted 05/06/2017 at 07:54:50
It's on Eurosport 2 from 12pm.
Hugh Jenkins
4 Posted 05/06/2017 at 08:13:09
Come on, Young Blue's – you can do this.

What an accolade and what an introduction to next season – World Cup winners,

Bob Hannigan
5 Posted 05/06/2017 at 09:22:02
In the US it is on FS1 at 7:00 AM Eastern
Peter Gorman
6 Posted 05/06/2017 at 10:56:33
Fingers crossed. Some very good teams have already been knocked out and the team to beat is Italy.
Ed Smith
7 Posted 05/06/2017 at 11:31:08
No Dowell or Calvert Lewen in starting line up.
John Raftery
8 Posted 05/06/2017 at 11:43:45
Ed (7) No, according to the BBC Dowell is starting. Calvert-Lewin is on the bench.
Frank Wade
9 Posted 05/06/2017 at 11:51:00
This Link looks okay.
Peter Gorman
10 Posted 05/06/2017 at 11:54:30
Works for me, Frank, thanks!
Ed Smith
11 Posted 05/06/2017 at 11:56:49
John. Great. Glad I got that wrong. Thought that was strange, he's looked great to me.
Frank Wade
12 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:00:12
Ed, Dowell is playing along with Lookman and Kenny
Craig Fletcher
13 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:11:36
First ten minutes gone, Lookman has been superb, technically the best player on the pitch. One criticism though – he always seems to want to take one touch too many before shooting in the opposition box.
Brian Cleveland
14 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:16:37
Not sure why Solanke got selected ahead of DCL... must be who he plays for rather than his qualities...
Chris Williams
15 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:23:36
Kenny has looked good defensively and going forward.
Brian Cleveland
16 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:35:32
Yeah Chris, Kenny looked good in all games so far.

Onomah looked good in other games, today looks a bit off the pace.

Quite impressed with Walker-Peters, the left-back, decent defending and good coming forward too.

Peter Gorman
17 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:39:21
This England side are technically gifted but Mexico are also strong. Kenny and Dowell linking well on the right, it might take more magic from Lookman to open the scoring.
Chris Williams
18 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:41:23
Very even game now after a strong start by England. They look dangerous and we're pushed back a bit.
Peter Gorman
19 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:43:52
Definitely Chris, Mexico are pressing very high.
John Raftery
20 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:46:40
It is Armstrong who is playing in place of Calvert-Lewin. Neither he nor Solanke are performing well in this one. England are struggling to play it through midfield and are getting caught in possession a few times in their own half. After a bright start it looks as though they will have their work cut out to win this one.
Brian Cleveland
21 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:49:00
Armstrong running but not quite got the quality for the moment, and Solanke looks very ordinary. Not troubled their keeper once yet.

Another game going to extra time?

Peter Gorman
22 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:49:44
Back to work, will be following the TW comments on the sly – hope they get through. A quick note on Dowell, he is playing well and doing his share of duty for the team, bodes well for him as there have been doubts in the past that he could me anything more than a luxury player.

COYB (I mean, England)

Jay Wood
23 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:54:13
England looked very good in the opening 10-15 minutes. Since then, Mexico has grown into the game and it is very even-Stevens.

Mexico is an upgrade on the quality of teams England has faced so far in this tournament, but England do look a bit 'leggy.' Some moments of poor control and poor passing, typical of when energy or concentration levels are not at 100%.

Kenny and Dowell again linking well on the right where England's main threat is coming from. Solanke looks a yard dog on this performance, but it appears the manager has gone for muscle over guile in playing Armstrong and Solanke over Calvert-Lewin for this one.

Could go either way this one. No one team is really dominating.

Chris Williams
24 Posted 05/06/2017 at 12:59:14
Solanke is big and strong but has a lot of improving to do. I didn't notice Armstrong really.

Hard one to call, but England need to get a grip early on next half.

Brian Cleveland
25 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:05:22
There we go, Murphy's Law, criticise Solanke and now he scores!
Hugh Jenkins
26 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:05:36
Apparently Solanke has scored – we'll never hear the end of it!
Chris Williams
27 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:09:49
See how much Solanke has improved since half-time?

Could have had another couple, and hit the post. Dowelled looking dangerous now.

Brian Cleveland
28 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:11:35
Chris, it was Onomah who hit the post!
Sam Hoare
29 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:25:33
Kenny looks a really good passer. Just threaded through a perfectly weighted ball down the right channel for Armstrong to run onto that created a decent chance for Solanke eventually.
Frank Wade
30 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:27:04
Calvert-Lewin on for Armstrong.
Brian Cleveland
31 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:29:04
Onomah sent off... that was a complete accident.
Brian Williams
32 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:29:54
Ademola's not getting much of a look in, dwelling on the ball when he does.

Kenny just looks like Coleman from a distance, bombing down the right, but with even better passing than Seamie.

Dowell looks composed.

Brian Williams
33 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:32:55
Referee's a fucking prat!
Sam Hoare
34 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:36:40
Very unjust red. Calvert-Lewin just put through, should probably have scored though not an easy one by any means.
Andrew Keatley
35 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:37:30
Last ten minutes.

Lookman subbed after Onomah red card; showed signs of brightness, but faded after a good start.

Dowell has been neat and tidy but not too influential.

Kenny has been very strong. Probably England's second best player, after the exceptionally good Walker-Peters.

Calvert-Lewin on for Armstrong, just been put through on goal, keeper saves one on one from tight angle.

David Hallwood
36 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:47:57
I think Kenny's a shoo-in for Seamus but it doesn't look like Koeman agrees.
Sam Hoare
37 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:49:32
Calvert-Lewin put through again. Heavy touch gave the keeper the chance to clear. Not been hugely impressed by him today, not his best day.
Brent Stephens
38 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:50:59
Bring on Italy. Well done.
Bob Hannigan
39 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:51:27
3 Lions prevail!!!
Chris Williams
40 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:54:04
Well battled, and a poor sending off for me. Kenny the pick of our lads, but Lewis Cook looks a player.
Sam Hoare
41 Posted 05/06/2017 at 13:55:23
Good work from the lads. Only saw the second half but Cook was the one who caught my eye.

Kenny was mostly solid though skinned once or twice at the end. Lookman competitive but didn't get much of the ball. Dowell was composed and worked hard. Calvert-Lewin was a bit disappointing with two decent chances and didn't much look like scoring either of them.

Jay Wood
42 Posted 05/06/2017 at 14:03:41
Dug deep to get through that.

Onomah's 2nd yellow card was harsh. Although he didn't play well today, he is going to be a big miss in the semi against Italy. Almost everything goes through him in midfield and he is an enviously good footballer who has already featured for Spurs 1st team.

Solanke actually got very lucky for his goal. He was in possession of the ball, with space and time to play a ball wide left to the open Lookman. Instead, he coughed up easy possession – and this is where he got lucky. The ball fell to captain Cook near the centre circle who played an excellent first time pass though the heart of the Mexico defence who, for about the only time of the game, had the 2 centre backs out of position and Solanke was wide open in the position he had lost the ball moments before.

Dowell not influential? He was the most composed and accurate of the England midfield today. Kenny was once again excellent in every aspect of his game. Lookman very quiet after a promising start.

Calvert-Lewin should have done better with a couple of opportunities he had. Koeman obviously likes the lad, given all the game time he gave him ahead of more experienced options, but he still has a lot to prove to me.

At least they didn't have to play extra time as all the other qualifiers for the semis did. That could work in their favour as energy and concentration levels today were not as high as all previous games to date.

Dave Abrahams
43 Posted 05/06/2017 at 14:05:02
Thanks Frank Wade (#9) for the link, that's twice you've given me good links.

England did an awful lot of defending but did it well, maybe the heat was getting to them in the second half, they looked very sluggish and very naive in giving the ball away too easily in those tense last 10 minutes but persevered and hung on for the victory; looking forward to the semi-final.

Jonjoe had another good game, Dowell had a decent game, Lookman seemed to be starved of the ball and Calvert-Lewin didn't do enough considering he was fresh could have worked a bit harder, Solanke took his goal well but didn't look an outstanding player but that is the first time I have seen him.

Brian Wilkinson
44 Posted 05/06/2017 at 14:45:51
Watching all the games, I have to disagree Italy are the best side left in it, we have done well to avoid Venezuela who for me have been the ones to beat on performances; much prefer Italy who will be a good test for the England youngsters.

Kenny again had a good game, Calvert-Lewin needs to think a little bit more before doing everything in a split-second, bit more calmness and he will get even better.

Dowell – great passing and linkup play, he needs to add a bit of the Tom Davies tackling to his game when not in possession and probably the reason Ronnie has not selected him.

John Raftery
45 Posted 05/06/2017 at 14:59:08
Progressing in this tournament is great experience for the players involved and should help with their development. There are obviously no guarantees but this crop look better than their 2013 counterparts who included John Stones, Ross Barkley, Luke Garbutt, John Lundstram and Chris Long from our club plus Eric Dier and a fairly hopeless looking Harry Kane. They failed to win a game and finished bottom of their group.
William Cartwright
46 Posted 05/06/2017 at 15:32:13
John, that is a sobering reminder of how fast time flies in football and how players really do have to live for the moment... I would have loved to have seen Walsh at this tournament!
Brian Abbsey
48 Posted 05/06/2017 at 15:57:20
Is it possible to appeal that red card? Absolutely diabolical decision. I actually thought our lad had been fouled. On a couple of occasions, the ref was trying to be the centre of attention. Where the hell do they get them from?
Andrew Keatley
50 Posted 05/06/2017 at 16:28:11
Jay Wood (#42) – Did you really think Dowell was influential? He played one beautiful cross-field through-ball to Armstrong (who miscontrolled it when one-on-one), and was neat and tidy most of the time, but I thought he struggled to impose himself on the game, and might be lucky to retain his place for the semi. And in terms of being the "most composed and accurate" of the midfield, I thought Lewis Cook had an excellent game.

The way Onomah was trying to carry the ball out of defence kept putting us under pressure – he dwells on the ball too long, and a few times it nearly cost the team. His defensive position is also questionable at times; he didn't protect the back four like he should have done. His red card was a joke though.

Back four and goalkeeper were decent. Armstrong was anonymous. Solanke strolled around like he was Zinedine Zidane; on that showing he's not even Zinedine Kilbane. Calvert-Lewin worked hard, but that little bit of quality deserted him when he could have put the game to bed.

Peter Gorman
51 Posted 05/06/2017 at 17:06:01
Great result but Italy will be a tough test next. The sending off was ludicrous but for 2 yellows so I doubt it can be rescinded, Brian.

Got to disagree with you Andrew, I thought Dowell was easily the match of Cook, other than the odd stumble he was composed and effective. With the suspension of Onomah how can Dowell not start the semi?

Kenny was his usual excellent self. How can he not be Coleman's understudy - it'd be an absolute waste of talent to deprive him of game time. Great going forward and intelligent covers his duties at the back, with a great attitude thrown in.

Tony Abrahams
52 Posted 05/06/2017 at 17:17:07
Have to agree with that assessment of Dowell, Andrew. I also thought he was neat and tidy but not that imposing when it came to trying to hurt the opposition but it's not easy playing out wide when running is not really his strongest quality. He very much reminds me of Bily?

Thanks for the reminder John (#45), because I remember being on holiday, and watching that England team lose to Egypt, in a game in which a young Harry Kane reminded me of Lee Chapman. Barkley played like he still does, in and out, and always looking like he could and should do more, and Stones played on the right, and looked like England's most accomplished player.

Four years is a very long time and I hope that these Everton kids, can all carve out good careers for themselves. I have massive hopes for Jonjoe, simply because he matches talent with endeavour and looks to have a big heart. And I also think Lookman and Calvert-Lewin will do well considering that both of them still seem to be a bit raw? But first I hope they all go and win the World Cup which would be an absolutely terrific achievement.

Paul Thompson
54 Posted 05/06/2017 at 17:52:01
Enjoyable game – not much to add to the above. One general thing – England have a lot of really skillful players, much better than their dull elders. This includes Dowell and Lookman, but Walter-Peters, Cook, Onomah and the Chelsea lad who cam on toward the end. It doesn't always gel though and we don't retain the ball well enough.

Kenny is a smashing all-rounder – will be very disappointed if he doesn't make the first team next season.

Jay Wood
55 Posted 05/06/2017 at 18:13:01
Andrew @ 50.

Yes, I do think Dowell was influential. As you quoted me, for me he was consistently the "most composed and accurate" of the midfield. I don't disagree with you that the skipper Lewis Cook also had an excellent game, but today Dowell – as I said – looked remarkably composed and unfazed by the occasion.

He has a deceptively languid style that possibly hides the fact that he has excellent control and passing skills, constantly – intuitively, even – gets in good positions to receive the ball and seems to create ample time and space for himself in which to play. He also possibly delivers a better damn corner than anyone of our current 1st team!

I recall only once in the whole game when he turned over the ball, when he was caught in two minds with Kenny on an overlap, whether to pass to his club mate or take on the encroaching player.

There was once in the first half, Woodman the 'keeper (who is having an excellent tournament) launched a high ball to Dowell, tight on the right touchline with a Mexican defender so tight he was almost inside his shorts. Kieran nonchalantly INSTANTLY killed the towering ball dead, held off the defender and played the ball inside to help launch an England counter attack.

That was class.

As for Onomah, I don't know how much of the tournament you have followed, but trust me, today was his poorest game. Usually, he is THE MAN in midfield for England.

As I earlier noted, today I thought England looked a bit leggy, because they have been playing very well until now. This is a very good TEAM with many a promising player among them.

As ever, how many kick on to have a top, top career, remains in the lap of the gods. But with the right application and continued development, there is no reason a higher percentage than normal may well progress to being very good Premier League footballers and international players.

And our Everton boys are right in the mix to achieve that.

Tom Bowers
56 Posted 05/06/2017 at 18:33:27
They do have a good team and, make no mistake, Mexico are a tough team to beat. England were very shaky in the second half but did well to hold on with ten men.

However, I always get nervous when the Italians are still around as whatever luck is going they have more than their fair share of it, much like the RS. COYB.

Andrew Keatley
57 Posted 05/06/2017 at 19:13:38
Jay (#55) – I didn't say Dowell played badly, just that he wasn't that influential. He does have a languid style, and he is class, with huge ability on the ball, but today he didn't deliver as much as he can.

Both Dowell and Lookman lost the ball at least twice each (under pressure) when receiving the ball from throw-ins, and both of them left their respective full-backs a tad exposed at times – which might well be the result of an instruction to play further up the pitch. Neither played badly, they just didn't play particularly well.

I agree with you about Onomah being a very good prospect, but in the Mexico game he created problems for his team-mates even before the sending off.

Peter Gorman
58 Posted 05/06/2017 at 19:28:35
The Italians beat Zambia with 10 men, all 3 of their goals after the sending off (Zambia have some forwards btw). Italy are definitely dangerous but England are not conceding much at all, a penalty and a freak own goal to date.

Jay, I also spotted that bit of elegance from Dowell and noted throughout the game that this side play at a technical level that puts the seniors to shame.

Martin Mason
59 Posted 05/06/2017 at 19:54:22
Good game today against very good opponents. Good job Mexico were weak finishers or it could have been different. I was very proud of the Everton players but especially Jonjoe Kenny who should be in Everton's first team.

They have a very hard time ahead though because, while they would have walked into the first team at one time, it is very difficult now, opportunities are far more limited.

John Raftery
60 Posted 05/06/2017 at 20:38:32
It is interesting to see how Kieran Dowell might be destined to divide opinion among supporters, a bit like Mezut Ozil. At this level, players are still developing their game but it is unlikely we will ever see him chasing down defenders and winning possession in forward positions, the sort of stuff which readily wins the backing of fans.

I prefer to consider the things he does well, notably his ability to play quick, forward passes, his dead ball kicking, crossing and finishing ability. Today I thought he did his share of tracking back in support of Kenny until his legs went in the last five minutes before being substituted.

In terms of decision making he is generally excellent and certainly much better than for example, Ross Barkley and Gerard Deulofeu. I hope Koeman is prepared to give him an opportunity to show what he can do in the early rounds of the Europa League and League Cup. If not, it is probably time to send him out on loan.

Mike Gaynes
61 Posted 06/06/2017 at 15:10:32
Andrew (#57), agree... Dowell is calm and class on the ball, but doesn't appear to be a dynamic player. Always seems to play well without making much of a visual impression. It'll be interesting to see how he turns out.

Another outstanding performance from Kenny... some excellent touch passing and fine anticipation defensively on that first-half break. He was not challenged physically in this game, and I'll wait to see confirmation that he has the necessary strength to mark a Premier League forward.

I think we saw why Lookman has earned so little playing time from Koeman. As explosive as he has shown himself to be, he also tends to get a little over-elaborate, and was caught more than once trying to do too much on the ball. I still think he's a star in the making, but he needs to learn how to adapt to the flow of the game.

Ernie Baywood
62 Posted 06/06/2017 at 23:19:51
Interesting reading through this... while I was watching I was thinking "Dowell's going to divide opinion as much as Barkley does".

Thought Lookman had a bad day. Kenny a very good one.

I had been wondering how Calvert-Lewincould be one of England's best Under-20s but then watching Armstrong I get it. Hard worker but nothing special about him at all.

Cook in midfield is one hell of a player.

Brian Wilkinson
63 Posted 08/06/2017 at 11:37:56
England Italy semi final due to kick off 12.00pm today Thursday on Eurosport 2.

Kenny, Dowell, Lookman and Calvert- Lewin all start.

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