Italy U21 vs England U21 preview: Young Lions begin Euro preparations
England U21s also travel to Denmark on Tuesday
Last Updated: 15/11/18 4:28pm
England U21s will begin their preparations for the summer's European Championships when they take on Italy U21s in a friendly fixture in Ferrara on Thursday (kick-off 5.30pm).
Aidy Boothroyd's side secured their spot at the U21 Euros last month, which will also take place in Italy and San Marino in June 2019.
They will also travel to Denmark on Tuesday (November 20), and Boothroyd is hoping both away fixtures will help his side prepare for the upcoming tournament.
He told the FA's official website: "They're two very good games for us this month. One of them is in Italy, where the Championship is taking place next summer and it will be a real test for us, but that's what we want.
"We can work on things that we might not necessarily have done in the qualifying games, which will help us towards competing against the best teams in Europe next summer.
"Denmark are a good side and they switch up things tactically and have a certain style in the way they play the game and they regularly qualify for the big tournaments so that'll be a tough one.
"We're looking forward to both matches, after coming out of a tough group ourselves."
Four players have recently pulled out of the England U21 squad, with Crystal Palace defender Aaron Wan-Bissaka (shoulder), West Brom's Harvey Barnes (foot), Sheffield Wednesday's Josh Onomah (knee) and Dael Fry of Middlesbrough all withdrawing.
Bristol City defender Lloyd Kelly has been added to the squad and could be in line for his first U21 cap this week.
Demarai Gray is also back in the fold after missing out in October through injury, while Phil Foden, Harvey Barnes, Reiss Nelson and Jay Dasilva have all retained their places in Boothroyd's 23-man squad.