Football: Flitcroft's flash of inspiration
Wednesday 16 June 1993
England Under-21. 1
ENGLAND'S troubled international game regained some self-respect here last night when the Under-21 side under the management of Lawrie McMenemy won the Toulon Tournament for the third time in four years, defeating the host nation with a goal by Manchester City's Garry Flitcroft that was good enough to have won an even better tournament than this.
Whatever fate awaits England's senior side, the long-term future seems in safe enough hands.
Flitcroft's goal will live long in the memory of those who saw it: a 30- yard strike which swerved viciously past Frederic Cado, in the French goal, in the 54th minute.
Both teams had arrived at the tournament's climax unbeaten and were obviously respectful of one another because of it, England all the more so after a second-minute jolt to their confidence, when Paul Gerrard, the Oldham goalkeeper, not for the first time in this tournament, was required to save their neck. Florin Maurice appeared to have judged his chip at a free-kick, following a foul by Neil Ardley on Steve Marlet, to perfection, but Gerrard pushed it on to the bar.
England never even went close to mounting a serious assault on the French goal as the opposition dominated the first half with their superior passing game. The second half started with another near thing, when Bernard Diomede sliced a shot wide, but after Flitcroft's goal in the 54th minute there was only one more fright for the English and then Gerrard stood firm to make a superb reaction save to a shot from Maurice from six yards.
FRANCE UNDER-21: Cado (Stade Rennais); Marlet (AS Red-Star), Thiam (Montpiellier), Moreau (St Etienne), Gauvin (Chamois Niort), Marquet (Marseille), Dieng (Caen), Terrier (Metz), Abou (Lyon), Maurice (Lyon), Diomede (Auxerr). Substitutes: Huard (Stade Rennais) for Terrier, 67; Brando (Toulon) for Abou, 61.
ENGLAND UNDER-21: Gerrard (Oldham Athletic); Ardley (Wimbledon), Small (Aston Villa), Awford (Portsmouth), Hall (Southampton), Sutton (Norwich City), Flitcroft (Manchester City), Sheron (Manchester City), Summerbee (Swindon Town), Redknapp (Liverpool), Anderton (Tottenham Hotspur). Substitutes: Whelan (Ipswich Town), Allen (QPR), Watson (Barnsley), Stuart (Bristol Rovers), Oakes (Luton Town).
Referee: H Dallas (Scotland).
Latest in Sport
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao live: Mayweather puts on defensive masterclass to win by unanimous decision
What time does Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao begin on Sky Sports Box Office?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: What time does the fight start and what channel is it on?
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: Only 132 pubs in the United Kingdom will show the fight - so where can you watch it?
Floyd Mayweather beats Manny Pacquiao by a unanimous points decision - but Pacquiao thinks he should have won, saying 'he did nothing'
- 1 Which country would be hardest to invade?
- 2 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 4 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 5 Royal baby girl born: Duchess of Cambridge's second child will be a princess thanks to Queen
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...
£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...
£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...
£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...