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
Australian Open 2015: Serena Williams vs Dominika Cibulkova match preview
Manchester United transfer news: Louis van Gaal personally stepped in to block Adnan Januzaj's loan move to PSG
Chelsea transfer news and rumours: Juan Cuadrado battle; Douglas Costa wants move; Paul Pogba possible
Chelsea vs Liverpool match report: Branislav Ivanovic seals classic semi-final with extra-time header to send Blues to Wembley
Gabriel Paulista: Talented Brazilian could grow into world-class defender at Arsenal
- 1 King Salman: Just five days in, Saudi Arabia's new king has already overseen a beheading
- 2 The BBC has just done more to eradicate ‘terrorism’ than all our wars since 9/11
- 4 Presidential optical illusion offers clues to how brain processes faces
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Louise Mensch says 'F**K YOU' in explosive tweets about David Cameron, Saudi Embassy and the Queen over King Abdullah tributes
£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunity to join a...
£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Partnership Relationship Mana...
£45000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This software development compa...
£14600 - £17600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are passionate about sup...