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England position promising after Serbia win

England put themselves in a promising position in Group B and sent Serbia out of the UEFA European Under-19 Championship with a 2-1 win in Rakvere.

Benik Afobe put Noel Blake’s side in front in the sixth minute, but it was backs to the wall for long periods for England, who doubled their advantage through Nathan Redmond in the 63rd minute. Nikola Ninković scored Serbia’s first goal of the tournament in the 70th minute, but it was not enough, and England now need a point against France to secure a semi-final berth.

Afobe gave England an ideal start, pouncing on a loose ball after Serbia goalkeeper Filip Pajović fumbled under a challenge from Harry Kane, who was looking to meet Ross Barkley’s cross. Serbia almost provided the perfect response as a weak pass from Jack Robinson put Ninković clean through, but Sam Johnstone saved. Playing on the counter, England almost doubled their lead in the 15th minute when Redmond sent Kane clear, but his hesitation allowed Nemanja Radoja to recover and block.

Serbia continued to probe and Uroš Spajić was the next to stretch Johnstone. At the other end, Pajović atoned for his fatal earlier error by scooping Nathaniel Chalobah’s header off the line. England continued to have problems at the back, however, and both Stefan Dimić and Ninković brought fine saves from Johnstone to conclude the first half.

England defended patiently in the second period, waiting for their opportunities on the break. Afobe headed one of those chances against a post, but used his blistering pace help England convert another, bursting free from a Serbia corner and finding Kane, who squared for Redmond to fire into the top right corner.

Serbian heads remained high and they finally found a route back into the game in the 70th minute as Ninković’s corner arced directly inside Johnstone’s near post. A second was not forthcoming, though, and England clung on.

Source Article from http://www.uefa.com/under19/season=2012/matches/round=2000210/match=2010337/postmatch/report/index.html?rss=1839062+England+position+promising+after+Serbia+win

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