Saido Berahino strikes again to save England U21s
Gareth Southgate's side draw 1-1 with Finland
Monday 09 September 2013
Saido Berahino saved England Under-21s’ blushes against Finland on a night that saw captain Andre Wisdom sent off and goalkeeper Jack Butland caught out for the opening goal.
It was an eventful second match in charge for manager Gareth Southgate, whose first game was a 1-0 win over Moldova last week.
Berahino got the goal that night and was on the scoresheet again in Tampere, grabbing a second-half equaliser in a European Championship qualifier that did not go to plan.
Finland took the lead in avoidable circumstances, with Butland rather embarrassingly caught out of position by a whipped, long-range free-kick by Moshtagh Yaghoubi in the 15th minute. It was just reward for the hosts’ early pressure, with the Stoke goalkeeper then tipping over a Robin Lod effort before James Ward-Prowse had England’s first chance of note.
The Southampton midfielder, making his second start for the Under-21s, again came close on the stroke of half-time, only to be denied by Fulham goalkeeper Jesse Joronen.
After the break Butland was relieved to see Tim Vayrynen fire over after being beaten to the ball before substitute Harry Kane was denied moments after coming on.
England soon drew level, though, with fine work by Manchester United’s Wilfried Zaha allowing West Bromwich’s Berahino to finish from close range in the 67th minute.
Southgate’s side pushed for a winner but fell just short as they played the final 16 minutes without Wisdom, who was sent off following an altercation with Vayrynen.
England Under-21s (4-3-3): Butland; Stones, Wisdom, Keane, Shaw; Ward-Prowse, Chalobah (Kane, 57), Carroll; Redmond (Ameobi, 57), Berahino, Zaha (Dier, 76).
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