Football / Coca-Cola World Youth Cup: Watson saves the day for England

Click to follow
The Independent Online
England Under-20. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

Mexico Under-20 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

(aet; England win 4-3 on penalties)

DAVID WATSON, the Barnsley goalkeeper, was England's hero yesterday as they won a penalty shoot-out with Mexico to reach the World Youth Cup semi-finals. England now play Ghana in Sydney on Wednesday.

Goalless after 90 minutes and 30 minutes of sudden-death extra- time - with England having lost the Spurs striker Nick Barmby and the Chelsea defender Andy Myers to injuries in the first half - the match went to penalties.

The Mexican substitute Jesus Olalde took the first spot-kick - one of two his team missed - which rattled the crossbar and bounced clear. Jamie Pollock, Darren Caskey, Alan Thompson and Chris Bart-Williams converted for England to maintain a lead, before Juan Sollis, the Central Americans' captain, stepped up to take their final penalty. He needed to score for Mexico to stay in the match but Watson was more than equal to the shot, diving well to his right and there was no need for England to take their fifth kick.

The quarter-final had begun badly for England and Barmby, who was preferred by David Burnside, the England manager, to the Leicester City striker Julian Joachim, who scored the winner in England's match against Turkey.

Barmby was brought crashing to the turf after just seven minutes and limped around, having aggravated an old shin splints injury, until substituted by Joachim in the 42nd minute. The Tottenham striker now faces a struggle to be fit for the semi-final.

England battled hard to cope with the loss of Barmby and Myers - within two minutes of each other - and contain the Mexicans' attacking play, but had a chance to claim the tie in the second period of extra-time. Bart-Williams, the man of the match, went close with a right-foot shot after a flicked-on long-throw from the right-back, Newcastle's Steve Watson. But Oswaldo Sanchez, the Mexican keeper, did well to push the ball round the post and ensure the sudden-death shoot-out, in which he was less fortunate.

England: D Watson (Barnsley); S Watson (Newcastle), Unsworth (Everton), Pearce, Myers (both Chelsea), Bart-Williams (Sheffield Wednesday), Caskey, Barmby (both Tottenham), Pollock (Middlesbrough), Thompson (Newcastle), Hughes (Crewe). Substitutes: Joachim (Leicester) for Barmby, 42; Harriott (Oldham) for Myers, 44.

Mexico: O Sanchez, Amante, Solis, Davino, C Gonzalez, R Gonzelez (Guadarrama, 90), J Sanchez, Garcia, Astivia, Nieto (Olalde, 80), Salazar.

Referee: H Krug (Germany).

Brazil's skill and imagination ensured that they, and not the United States, will face Australia in Wednesday's other semi-final. The South Americans won 3-0 with two goals from Bruno and one from Adriano.

WORLD YOUTH CUP

England. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

Mexico. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .0

11,047

(aet; England win 4-3 on pens)

(in Melbourne)

Brazil (1). . . . . . . . . . . . .3

United States (0). . . . . .0

Bruno 32, 90 12,000

Adriano 50

(in Adelaide)

Australia (0). . . . . . . . . .2

Uruguay (1). . . . . . . . . . . .1

Agostino 58 Sena 20

Carbone 100

(Australia win in sudden-death extra time)

(in Brisbane)

Ghana (0). . . . . . . . . . . . .3

Russia (0). . . . . . . . . . . .0

Ahinful 72

Addo 76, Asare 82

(in Sydney)

SEMI-FINAL LINE-UP: England v Ghana; Brazil v Australia (Wednesday, 17 March).

Comments