Portsmouth - Beaten by the better side
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Germany U21 4 - England U21 0


29th Jun 2009, 19:45

Attendance: 20,000

Beaten by the better side

Unfortunately the England U21 bid for European glory ended in defeat on Monday was they were soundly beaten 4-0 by their German counterparts, who were most certainly the better side that look to have several top class footballers coming through with one particular gem.

Things could have been so different had a header from Martin Cranie in the 1st minute from a James Milner freekick not missed the target or Theo Walcott, shortly after, made more of an opportunity, or at least passed to someone else that could.

Germany were only prevented from going ahead themselves by a defensive block from Micah Richards - a one-two between Mesut Ozil and Sami Khedina ended with Ozil's shot being blocked by the Citeh man but it was that man Ozil that slipped the ball through for Gonzalo Castro on 22 minutes and he, like in the Group B meeting earlier in the tournament, made no mistake, 1-0 Germany.

Villa's Milner and Boro's Adam Johnson were showing some good stuff but there was no real threat for England, certainly as an end product with no genuine striking option causing a threat - that was our own fault however due to suspensions...

Sebastian Boenisch and Ozil both went close with dangerous freekicks from 30 and 25-yards respectively as Germany went in at half time the worthy leaders - England were lacking in ideas so changes were needed at the break to alter this, the only change saw Michael Mancienne on for Nedum Onouha, but this was an injury replacement.

Only 3 minutes into the 2nd half and the task England were facing became even harder, Ozil's 35-yard freekick was allowed to sneak past Scott Loach to make it 2-0. The ball was moving all over the place but the Watford keeper would still be bitterely disappointed to have been beaten in the manor he was.

Still no further tactical changes were made by England with it being all too easy for the Germans, until suddenly we burst into life with Lee Cattermole almost breaking the bar with a 30-yard drive that had Manuel Neuer beaten. This saw England come to life and we started to threaten more but after good work from Milner one of the better chances could not be taken by Johnson.

The frustration of Stuart Pearce was starting to really show, we all know what a passionate man he is but this was sometimes taken to the brink and he was furious with Boenisch when he took out Milner, the German was maybe fortunate to escape with only a yellow.

Only a goal line clearance from Andreas Beck denied Cattermole again, who looked as though he was heading England back into the game but this is when you sensed it really was not going to be our day - although to be fair it had not been our best day and Germany were coasting.

When the dangerous Ozil skinned Cranie again, who had a difficult night, with the goal at his mercy somehow Sandro Wagner managed to miss from literally a yard out.

England made a change, taking off Bolton's Fabrice Muamba for Everton's Jack Rodwell immediately after that miss with Richards being thrown up top, but no sooner had this change been made the highly impressive Ozil put Wagner through again and this time he made no mistake as he put the ball through the legs of Loach for 3-0 on 79 minutes.

4-0 soon followed, having missed a sitter before his first goal Wagner added another on 84, a cracker from 20-yard that gave Loach no chance.

The outstanding Ozil was taken off at the end to get the kind of ovation that he deserved, watch out for this guy though as he looks like he is going to be a superstar, and despite another sub Craig Gardner going close at the death for England that was that.

Without a shadow of a doubt the better side won, the Germans look to have plenty of talent coming through but the Young Lions should have learned something from this, even if it was a harsh lesson mostly in discipline as a lack of this meant suspensions to key personnel and that did not help.

You can view the highlights of the game, should you wish, on this sky sports video...

Stuart Pearce is one of the most passionate and patriotic Englishmen you will find, sometimes, like Monday showed at times he gets too into it but this defeat really hurt him and it is going to stay with him for the next 2-years...

He says that he wants to keep that hurt with him, as he wants it to be kept with those that will be back for the next U21 Championships in 2-years time as he will be there as he confirmed that a new deal has been signed. Pearce still believed that England were good enough to have won the tournament but conceded Germany were the better side on the night. See Pearce's thoughts on this, and more, in this sky sports video...


Join the Vital Pompey Debate

The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday June 30 2009

Time: 8:34AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
The suspensions certainly hurt us, but we can't hide behind that. Germany deserved their win, and let's hope this loss can be used for the positive. Ozil....has anybody ever heard of him? A player to watch after this showing.
Report Abuse
30/06/2009 08:45:00

agree corny, some of these will go onto play for the full england side, others just are not godo enough tbh. some that will go onto play for the full england side are still most probably going to be in the u21's for a few years yet - im thinking rodwell is going to be a star...
ozil was fantastic last night, and has been a star of the tournament - he will be at next summers world cup with germany im sure, along with several other highly talented players.
Report Abuse
30/06/2009 08:55:00

Totally outplayed last night, but as soon as you have to play Walcott as a loan striker your not going to have much success. I agree suspensions hit us big time.
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30/06/2009 10:04:00

Never good to lose to the Germans in anything, but let's take the positives. They got to a final, won semi on penalties & a huge amount of experience.
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30/06/2009 14:01:00

you can't argue with the score, but having played germany only a week (or two?) earlier with our second team, and been unlucky to draw with them... it does make me think the suspensions, and the long game really hurt us.
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30/06/2009 15:47:00

This match puts questions about Cranie to me?? Yesterday he was not in the match. Germany have a bright future as their under21 team can play better football than their national A team!
Pompey Malta
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30/06/2009 23:09:00

0-4 to the ******** Germans.... ah well at least it was only u21's ..
Report Abuse
01/07/2009 00:51:00

Still .. gutted for Crainie..
Report Abuse
01/07/2009 22:28:00


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