Late strike sinks England

England suffered their second late blow within two days as a strike from Taveres condemned them to defeat against Portugal.

Having trailed to Moreto’s first-half strike, Leicester City’s Layton Ndukwu levelled for John Peacock’s youngsters within two minutes of the second period at Chesterfield’s Proact Stadium. 

But a winner seven minutes from time saw the Portuguese claim the three points.

England 1-2 Portugal

The FA U17 International Tournament
Friday 29 August 2014
Proact Stadium, Chesterfield FC
Attendance: 1,073

The drizzly conditions ensured the pitch was greasy, but the slick start many were hoping for did not materialise as the players adjusted to the slippery surface. 

Six minutes passed before the first effort arrived, but Tiago Dias could only find ‘row z’ with his long-ranger.

Midfielders Daniel Wright and Tom Davies were both involved in some neat passing interchanges as England looked to push forward, but the final ball was found wanting as they failed to cut through the Portuguese defence.

Chances were proving to be few and far between, but a moment of magic broke the deadlock on 14 minutes – unfortunately for Peacock’s youngsters it was the visitors who struck the first blow.

A long ball was lofted forward from the back, and Dias looked to be through before Cameron Humphreys denied him with a great tackle. 

Unluckily, however, the Manchester City defender’s block fell straight to the onrushing Moreto on the edge of the area, and the FC Porto attacker showed why he is highly-rated as he curled home beautifully.

The Young Lions re-grouped, and they began to build up some momentum as they got in behind the full-back on several occasions to deliver a cross – but each time they failed to capitalise.

Midway through the first half Leicester City forward Layton Ndukwu, held off the challenge of Pedro Perreirato and met a pass before shooting right-footed from an acute angle. He was denied by goalkeeper Fabio Duarte, though, who collected the ball at the second attempt.

England line-up v Portugal

The England line-up against Portugal

The hosts continued to search for an equaliser, and had another attempt from Jahmal Hector-Ingram to show for their efforts, but they could not find a way through as they trailed at the half-time break.

England made a double change, Jacob Maddox and Danny Collinge replacing Wright and Yates, and it looked to be inspired as they drew level two minutes after the re-start.

After a passing move, Maddox travelled with the ball down the right and pulled it back from the bye-line, whipping in a cross for Ndukwu to knock the ball home to level.

With their tails up, the Young Lions had a swagger about them now as they looked to turn the game on its head. Left back Hayden Coulson ran past three defenders before firing over when offered a sight of goal.

Another double change was made by Peacock – Jay DaSilva replacing Middlesbrough’s Coulson and Nathan Holland, who claimed an assist on Wednesday, replaced Will Patching in the midfield.

England U17s v Portugal

England’s Jahmal Hector-Ingram battles with Bruno Paz

The heavens had well and truly opened now, but the Young Lions remained on top, though they needed a goal to match their superiority. 

Forward Kaylen Hinds was introduced into the attack in place of Hector-Ingram on 72 minutes – but seconds later it would be an equaliser he would be chasing instead of a winner.

Portugal countered an England attack and broke fast down the right through Pedro Ferreira, and he raced towards the box before passing sideways to Generoso. The forward laid up perfectly for Taveres to rifle home from the edge of the area into the top corner.

Chris Willock was thrown on in attack as England chased a late comeback, but it was not to be as the Portuguese held on for victory.

With Italy defeating Czech Republic 1-0 earlier in the day, Portugal find themselves level with the Italians at the top of the group on four points.

England (4-2-3-1): 1 Aston Oxborough (Norwich City); 2 James Yates (Everton), 6 Cameron Humphreys (Manchester City), 15 Darnell Johnson (Leicester City), 12 Hayden Coulson (Middlesbrough); 14 Daniel Wright (Sunderland), 4 Tom Davies (c) (Everton); 7 Callum Gribben (Manchester United), 8 Will Patching (Manchester City), 16 Layton Ndukwu (Leicester City); 18 Jahmal Hector-Ingram (West Ham United)

Subs: 10 Jacob Maddox (Chelsea) for Wright (40), 5 Danny Collinge (VFB Stuttgart) for Yates (40), 3 Jay DaSilva (Chelsea) for Coulson (57), 17 Nathan Holland (Everton) for Patching (57), 9 Kaylen Hinds (Arsenal) for Hector-Ingram (72), 11 Chris Willock (Arsenal) for Ndukwu (78)

Subs not used: 13 Paul Woolston (Newcastle United)
Goal: Ndukwu (42)

Head Coach: John Peacock

Portugal (4-3-3): 12 Carlos Alves; 3 Bruno Paz, 5 Ricardo Mangas, 13 Pedro Pereira, 17 Abdu Conte; 6 Pedro Ferreira, 8 Gedson, 10 Moreto (C); 7 Generoso, 11 Tiago Dias, 16 Centeno

Subs: 18 Joao Mendes for Centeno (48), 9 Marcelo for Dias (48), 15 Jorge Pereira for Moreto (63), 14 Tavares for Gedson (69), 2 Joao Simoes for Mangas (69)

Subs not used: 1 Fabio Duarte, 4 Goncalo Vieria 
Goal: Moreto (14), Tavares (73)
Head Coach: Filipe Ramos