England U17s team has won the European Championship for the second time in their history after overcoming Netherlands 4-1 on penalties. A final between two countries who has won three of the last four tournaments (The Netherlands won the tournament in 20111 and 2012, England won it in 2010) was not a high scoring affair with the score tied at 1-1 after regulation.
England broke the deadlock through Dominic Solanke who scored his fourth goal of the tournament in the 25th minute, however The Young Three Lions could not hold on to their lead, with The Netherlands equalizing through Jari Schuurman. There were several chances late on for both sides, but neither team could find a winner, with penalties needed to settle the score.
England was a perfect four out of four in penalties, with Ryan Ledson (Everton), Taylor Moore (RC Lens), Callum Cooke (Middlesbrough), and Jonjoe Kenny (Everton) sealing the trophy for England. Netherlands first taker, Dani van der Moot spot kick was saved by Newcastle United's Freddie Woodman, Schuurman scored the Dutch second and only penalty, before Calvin Verdonk failed to hit the target with the Dutch final kick.
According to manager John Peacock, his side were "worthy winners". He also added that his side has been practicing penalties for the last couple of weeks. Finally he said:
"it's never nice to lose on penalties - unfortunately we have been there before - but it's nice to have our turn to be successful"
Something which hopefully will resonate with our boys in competing in Brazil next month.
CONGRATULATIONS ENGLAND U17 !!!