REPORT: England's Under 21s beat Czech Republic Under 21s in Euro 2023 qualifier at Turf Moor

England's Under 21s re-established control in Group G of the European Championship 2023 Qualifiers with victory over leaders Czech Republic at Turf Moor.

Thursday, 11th November 2021, 8:58 pm
Updated Thursday, 11th November 2021, 9:00 pm
Anthony Gordon of England celebrates scoring the second goal during the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Qualifier match between England U21s and Czech Republic U21s on November 11, 2021 in Burnley, England.

The Young Lions remain second, two points behind the previously unbeaten table-toppers, who hadn't conceded, but they would usurp their opponents if capitalising on their game in hand.

Lee Carsley's side shot out of the blocks at the home of the Clarets and opened up a two-goal cushion with just 11 minutes on the clock.

Anthony Gordon, who has made eight appearances for Everton in the Premier League this term, shifted the ball on to his right foot inside the penalty area and his deflected effort, off Martin Vitik, beat goalkeeper Matej Kovaf.

Jacob Ramsey of England holds off Adam Karabec of Czech during the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Qualifier match between England U21s and Czech Republic U21s on November 11, 2021 in Burnley, England.

The Toffees' youngster's second also came with an element of fortune as the former Preston North End and Swindon Town loanee finished into an empty net after Kovaf had pushed Conor Gallagher's effort into his path.

Manchester City's Cole Palmer stung the palms of Kovaf with a left-footed drive as the hosts sought a third goal, which they registered just minutes later.

Jacob Ramsey played an integral role, telegraphing skipper Filip Kaloc's pass out from the back, before evading a challenge and slipping the ball into Folarin Balogun, who picked out the far corner.

Another effort from Gordon, which he dragged wide of the upright, prompted Jan Suchoparek into a change in a bid to dilute England' s dominance, with Tomas Cvancara making way for Lukas Cerv.

Folarin Balogun of England scores the third goal during the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Qualifier match between England U21s and Czech Republic U21s on November 11, 2021 in Burnley, England.

The change seemed to do the trick, but only after Arsenal's Balogun had forced Kovaf into another smart save, this time down by his left hand post.

The Czechs were down at the other end of the pitch within a minute and Pavel Sulc drew the foul from Luke Thomas inside the box, with the left back duly booked.

Adam Karabec fired the resulting spot kick right down the middle, as Josef Bursik moved to his left, to pull a goal back and make it 3-1.

Balogun should have added a fourth with seconds remaining in the first half when Gordon's pass across goal left the striker with a tap-in, but the 20-year-old fluffed his lines.

Folarin Balogun of England holds off Michal Fukala of Czech during the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Qualifier match between England U21s and Czech Republic U21s on November 11, 2021 in Burnley, England.

England saw the game out in a professional manner after the interval, limiting the opposition while crafting a number of opportunities in front of the Barnfield Construction Stand.

Gordon threatened once again when chopping inside Adam Gabriel at the by-line and testing Kovaf with a right-footed attempt.

Palmer also skewed an effort wide when well-placed inside the area after Gordon had stolen possession and brought Balogun into play.

The visitors huffed and puffed inside the final third, but failed to test Stoke City stopper Bursik.

The Young Lions aren't back in action until March 25th, 2022, when they host Andorra's Under 21s.