- Cole Palmer scored in England’s U21s’ 3-0 win over Luxembourg
- Liam Delap and Callum Doyle also scored for Lee Carsley’s team
Differdange, a sleepy town right on the border with France, felt far removed from the fireworks of England’s glorious summer, so the U21s packed a few sparklers to liven up the atmosphere.
Coincidentally, they all initially caught the eye at Manchester City: the three goalscorers – Liam Delap, Callum Doyle and Cole Palmer – came through the club’s academy. There can’t be many cases of one team dominating an England game like that.
Six of Lee Carsley’s first squad since winning a first European Championship were trained by the Premier League champions. Two more came from the bench. It was definitely a proud evening for City and an encouraging one for Carsley, whose team easily prevailed against Luxembourg with patient build-up and subsequent explosiveness and thus opened the qualification for the Euro 2025 on a positive note.
“We are heavily dependent on City, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham,” Carsley said. “We will have tougher tests, we will play against stronger teams.” My expectations are high. “I see so much talent in training.”
When Delap scored on his debut two minutes before half-time, England could have been leading by at least three. His deft finish, which saw him beat the onrushing goalkeeper, was due in large part to Palmer’s clever passing in a crowded penalty area.
Cole Palmer was among the goalscorers as England Under-21s beat Luxembourg 3-0
Liam Delap scored the first goal for the England U21 team on his first appearance at this level
Callum Doyle, another U21 debutant, also got on the scoresheet
A goal right on the City Football Academy pitch and another sign that Delap is putting a difficult two-year spell behind him after difficult loan spells in the Championship.
He is at Hull City this year and has already scored a few league goals. With a lack of genuine strikers at this level, Delap has the opportunity to make the spot his own.
Luxembourg U21: Lattik, Torres, Agostinelli, Fernandes, Sinner, Lohei (Cardoso 55), Irigoyen, Martins (Afonso 78), Monteiro (Englaro 55), Turping (Rossler 72), Rodrigues (Correia 72)
Booked: Martins, Lohei, Monteiro
Subs: Do Rego, Preljevic, Skenderovic, Viegas
England (4-3-3): Trafford 7 (Burnley); Lewis 7.5 (Man City), Harwood-Bellis 7 (Southampton), Wood 7 (Swansea City), Doyle 7.5 (Leicester City); Palmer 8.5 (Chelsea), Hackney 7 (Middlesbrough), Elliott 7 (Liverpool); Madueke 7.5 (Chelsea), Delap 7.5 (Hull City), Iling-Junior 6 (Juventus)
Subs: Scarlett 6 (Delap 63), Bynoe-Gittens 7.5 (Iling-Junior 63), McAtee (Madueke 77), Cresswell (Wood 77), Patino (Hackney 84)
Not used: Beadle, Norton-Cuffy, Humphreys, Edozie
Goals: Delap 43, Doyle 58, Palmer 67
Booked: Wood-Gordon, Bynoe-Gittens
Doyle, the highly-rated centre-back who played left-back, emerged with the second shot just before the hour mark, crossing with venom through Noni Madueke’s center and nestling inside the near post.
Palmer, who now plays for Chelsea for £42.5 million, took charge of the game in central midfield. His first touch of the ball bounced off the crossbar and into the goal, thanks largely to Borussia Dortmund’s Jamie Bynoe-Gittens’ direct run. “Jamie was electric when he came on,” Carsley said. Bynoe-Gittens was also once a city.
Lee Carsley watched his England side secure victory in their first game since the U21 European Championships