Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Money | By Armando Alvarado

England Rally to Beat Slovakia at 2017 European U21 Championship

England Rally to Beat Slovakia at 2017 European U21 Championship

Derby County duo Will Hughes and Jonathan Mitchell were both unused substitutes in Friday's group opener against Sweden, which ended in a goalless draw.

"It's knockout football now without a doubt", said the former Watford, Colchester, Coventry and Northampton manager.

Boothroyd had already labelled it a must-win game following Friday's 0-0 draw with Sweden but his words looked to have fallen on deaf ears after a desperate first half in Kielce.

"With the squad that we've picked, the depth and the quality in there, it means that a lot of the players before the [Sweden] game could consider themselves unlucky not to have started the first game".

"I don't think we played anywhere as near as well as we can and with it being the first game in the tournament, what was important was that we didn't lose".

"For me, it's been very positive and we are very close anyway, but it's great if I've got any questions as he knows all of the players so well".

The victor of each of the three groups qualifies automatically, with the best second-placed team also going through.

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"It's great if I have any questions about players - Gareth can be my sounding board because he knows them all so well and was a victor with them in Toulon a year ago".

"That's going to be an interesting game, but that's what we're here for".

"He wants to show us support and give us that confidence".

"In the second half we kept the ball really well, made good decisions on when to go wide, our full-backs delivered some really good balls in and managed to score a couple of goals".

England U21 captain James Ward-Prowse says senior team manager Gareth Southgate has been offering advice to the team.

Southgate is in Poland with No 2 Steve Holland and FA technical director Dan Ashworth.

He added: "I have got nothing but thanks for him". But my main focus at the minute is the tournament and making sure I am in the best way mentally and physically to help the team.

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