England U21 1-1 Poland U21: Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s strike not enough as Aidy Boothroyd’s side are held in European Championship warm-up clash
- England Under 21s were held to a draw by Poland Under 21s in a friendly at Ashton Gate on Thursday night
- Dominic Calvert-Lewin put England ahead in the 13th minute of match after he was set up by Reiss Nelson
- Poland equalised in the 34th minute courtesy of a free-kick from Sebastian Szymanski to secure a 1-1 draw
The result was not what Aidy Boothroyd wanted; there were elements of the performance, meanwhile, that will have left him shaking his head.
But it is likely there will come a point during the build-up to England’s assault on the Under 21 European Championships when the head coach will think about this night in Bristol and realise he has a group of players that can go all the way.
A 1-1 draw with Poland might not send a message across the continent but those who study the highlights of this interesting friendly will not fail to see that England has an abundance of attacking talent that could light up the championships.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin celebrates after putting England Under 21s in the lead against Poland Under 21s on Thursday night
Everton striker Calvert-Lewin finished from close range after he was set up by Reiss Nelson in the first half at Ashton Gate
The England Under 21 players congratulate Calvert-Lewin after he put them in lead in European Championship warm-up clash
Had it not been for some bad luck and inspired goalkeeping, England – inspired by the wonderful passing of Phil Foden and the electric surges of Reiss Nelson and Ademola Lookman – would have flattened their visitors.
It was quickly apparent this would not be a mundane contest. Poland, roared on by 2000 ex-patriots, had three chances in the first three minutes as England’s defenders made silly mistakes and struggled to gather their composure.
Soon, though, they were on the front foot with Foden elegantly pulling strings. He created England’s first chance in the fifth minute with a pass that could have come straight from the repertoire of his Manchester City team-mate David Silva. Calvert-Lewin, really, should have applied a finish.
Sebastian Szymanski scored the equaliser for Poland Under 21s with a free-kick in the 34th minute
The Poland Under 21 players celebrate after Szymanski’s free-kick pulled them level against England
Jonjoe Kenny struck the post in the second half as England attempted to restore their lead against…