Stuart Pearce refuses to defend England Under-21 players after Israel defeat

Image: Stuart Pearce: Says it is up to his players to come out and defend their performance

England Under-21 boss Stuart Pearce refused to defend his players after a 1-0 defeat to Israel ensured they finish bottom of their European Championship Group.

Future

Pearce's future as Under-21 boss was already in doubt and speculation will only increase after this latest defeat. When quizzed on whether the result may push him closer to the sack, Pearce remained non-committal, adding: "I've no idea, it certainly won't affect my position, whether it affects the FA's I've no idea. I'm not a boom and bust person. "I've taken this team into the tournament for the fourth time running - a lot of teams haven't done that. We were poor in this tournament, we were poor tonight. We got what we deserved. "We'll get on the coach, go back to the hotel and fly home tomorrow and reflect on how poor we were."

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