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Andorra U21 vs England U21. European Under-21 Championship Qualifying Group G.

Estadi Nacional d'Andorra.

Andorra U21 0

    England U21 1

    • R Brewster (sent off 55th minute)
    • E Smith-Rowe (67th minute)

    Andorra U21s 0-1 England U21s: Emile Smith Rowe strike secures narrow victory for Young Lions

    Match report and highlights as England Under-21s labour to slender victory over Andorra in their Euro 2023 qualifying campaign; Arsenal Emile Smith Rowe scored the only goal for Lee Carsley's side

    Emile Smith Rowe (right) celebrates after scoring England's winner against Andorra
    Image: Emile Smith Rowe celebrates after scoring England's winner against Andorra

    Emile Smith Rowe saved 10-man England Under-21s' blushes as the Young Lions laboured to a 1-0 victory in Andorra.

    The Arsenal midfielder scored his first Under-21s goal to help Lee Carsley's side to the win.

    Rhian Brewster was harshly sent off in the second half and the visitors looked like they would suffer again following Thursday's 2-2 draw in Slovenia.

    But they ground out victory in their Euro 2023 qualifier to move two points behind Albania and the Czech Republic in Group G.

    The Czech Republic host Kosovo on Tuesday and would restore their five-point lead over the Young Lions with victory.

    England drew 3-3 in Andorra last year and it looked for long spells like Carsley's men would be left frustrated again.

    They remained patient but lacked tempo and conviction in the final third to stretch their hosts.

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    Andorra, who had lost all previous four group games without scoring, grew in confidence and defended resolutely to stifle the Young Lions.

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    Highlights from England U21s’ 1-0 win over Andorra in qualifying for Euro 2023. (Pictures: @England)

    Goalkeeper Rodriguez Gimenez was never seriously tested in the first half and, while Conor Gallagher wanted a penalty after he went down under Eric Vales' challenge, England toiled against the minnows.

    James Garner's strike was saved and Gallagher shot over five minutes before the break but, soon after the restart, the visitors should have gone ahead.

    Garner found space and his excellent delivery should have been turned in by Brewster, only for the Sheffield United forward to guide it wide from five yards.

    It summed up the striker's lack of confidence, with Brewster yet to score a league goal for the Blades since his big-money move from Liverpool last year.

    The 21-year-old's night then got worse when he was sent off after collecting an innocuous second yellow card in the 56th minute.

    There was little in the challenge, Brewster holding his ground as he shielded the ball from Vales, but the Andorra captain went down and referee Igor Stojchevski produced another yellow.

    The striker, who was about to be substituted, was furious and Carsley was forced into a tactical reshuffle as Curtis Jones replaced Garner.

    But it was the Liverpool midfielder who crafted England's winner in the 67th minute.

    Jones, who missed the draw in Slovenia with a groin problem, raced away from an Andorra corner with Smith Rowe for company. He played a perfect pass for Smith Rowe and the Arsenal star rolled into the corner to spark relief on the bench.

    Carsley relieved after win

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    England U21 head coach Lee Carsley says his side didn't make it easy for themselves but was pleased with the way they held on to beat Andorra 1-0 in their European Championship qualifier.

    England Under-21s boss Lee Carsley: "Yeah, (it's) definitely (a relief). The idea is to win every game but, like you saw against Slovenia, we didn't make it easy at times tonight. They were tough and stubborn to break down.

    "It was pleasing that the one goal we did get was a counter from one of their times coming out to try and score. It was a great finish by Emile and excellent from Curtis (Jones) as well.

    "Rhian needs to learn. It was harsh, innocuous, but ultimately we had to grind a result out. I'm really pleased with the spirit the lads showed.

    "We've had 80 per cent possession and 15 shots, they haven't had a shot and we could have ended up drawing 0-0.

    "They were never going to come and attack us too much but when I looked at the draw a while back you know games like this are going to be really tough."

    England U21's Euro 2023 qualifying campaign

    September 7: England 2-0 Kosovo

    October 7: Slovenia 2-2 England

    October 11: Andorra 0-1 England

    November 11: England vs Czech Republic

    March 25, 2022: England vs Andorra

    March 29: Albania vs England

    June 3: Czech Republic vs England

    June 7: England vs Albania

    June 10: Kosovo vs England

    June 14: England vs Slovenia

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