ENGLAND U21 3, GERMANY U21 1
England U21 claimed a second big-name scalp in the space of six days with victory against Germany in an international friendly at Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane.
Goals from Folarin Balogun, Conor Gallagher and Cole Palmer helped England battle from behind to emerge victors.
And the success came after England won 2-0 in Italy last Thursday as they have maintained the momentum built up over their successful Euro U21 Championship qualifying campaign.
This international friendly provided both nations with a measure of one another ahead of next summer’s finals in Romania and Georgia.
England secured qualification by winning eight of their 10 qualifiers, the sole loss against Slovakia in their last game when they had already booked their passage.
It followed three wins in eight days against the Czech Republic, Albania and Kosovo which confirmed England’s progress.Embed from Getty Images
Germany topped their qualifying group with nine wins and one defeat.
The visitors had a couple of decent goal attempts in a lukewarm opening half hour, but both were narrowly off target.
After being a slow burner, the match burst to life in the final 10 minutes of the opening half.
Germany took the lead when former Manchester City player Felix Nmecha, younger brother of German international Lukas, stole in front of Max Aarons to head home a cross from Noah Katterbach.
England almost equalised immediately when former Manchester United midfielder James Garner headed against the crossbar from Harvey Elliott’s corner.
But the equaliser came three minutes before the break when Anthony Gordon’s cross was flicked on by Gallagher and Balogun turned well before firing home in off the upright.
Germany might have regained the lead just before the end of the half after a poor clearance by Manchester City’s James Trafford, but the goalkeeper recovered to save well to deny Jan Thielmann.
England were ahead within two minutes of the restart through Chelsea starlet Gallagher.
Aston Villa’s Jacob Ramsey made a surging run from deep and his shot was blocked and rebounded to Gordon whose low cross from near the by-line was turned home by Gallagher from inside the six-yard box.
England suddenly had the momentum as Garner’s 25-yard drive dipped just over and Balogun, the Arsenal striker on loan at French club Reims, brought a fine save from goalkeeper Noah Atubolu and then bent a shot narrowly wide.
Head coach Lee Carsley made eight changes with little over 20 minutes left as Trafford, Aarons and Taylor Harwood-Bellis were the only starters who remained.
The eight included City players Tommy Doyle, Palmer and James McAtee along with former United youngster Angel Gomes.
And a ninth change saw a former City player replaced by a current one, Harwood-Bellis making way for Luke Mbete.
Palmer sealed victory in the fifth and final minute of stoppage time as he was put clean through as he raced through the middle to fire home from 18 yards with a low drive.