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Smith Rowe scores on first start in 9 months as England U21s smash France 4-0



EMILE SMITH ROWE netted on his first start for NINE months to help Lee Carsley’s Young Lions to a statement win over much-fancied France.

Noni Madueke and Curtis Jones also got on the scoresheet, teeing each other up having come off the bench, before the former laid on a fourth for fellow sub Jacob Ramsey.

Noni Madueke shined as the Young Lions thrashed France 4-0

Arsenal whizkid Smith Rowe, 22, had surgery in September to cure a nagging groin problem but is yet to be named in Mikel Arteta’s starting XI this term.

It means the last time he began a match was the England Under-21’s shock 2-1 defeat to Slovenia in Huddersfield on June 13, 2022 – our first Euro qualifier loss in over a decade.

Smith Rowe gave his club manager a timely reminder of his talents after being overlooked of late with the opener here just after half-time.


It paved the way for a resounding victory in Leicester – even if it was only a friendly – against a well-regarded France side ahead of this summer’s Under-21 Euros in Romania and Georgia.

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Sylvain Ripoli’s Les Bleus will have been kicking themselves after dominating the first half.

Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise, who is eligible to play for England, wasted a few chances from distance.

While Matthis Abline was denied by an impressive James Trafford stop having played a neat one-two and fired at goal from an acute angle.

Trafford, on loan at Bolton from Manchester City, was England’s best player in the first 45 as he flicked over Manu Kone’s wicked drive.


Arsenal ace Smith Rowe opened the scoring at 50 minutes
New Chelsea winger Madueke doubled England's lead 13 minutes from time

Carsley’s men came out for the second half at the King Power with more purpose and on 51 minutes, they were ahead.

Tottenham’s Oliver Skipp brilliantly intercepted a weak pass and gave it to captain Morgan Gibbs-White.


The Nottingham Forest man took a touch and lifted a pinpoint cross over the French backline, which included Chelsea’s Benoit Badiashile, and found Smith Rowe.

Arsenal’s No10 did the rest by finding the corner with a measured header.

Liverpool's Curtis Jones made it 3-0 to England moments later
Aston Villa's Jacob Ramsey bagged an 86th minute effort for 4-0

From there it was all England, particularly when Madueke and Jones were introduced.

Liverpool midfielder Jones, playing in a false nine role, snuck through a clever pass that allowed Madueke to find the corner for 2-0 on 77 minutes.

Moments later England had a third as the pair combined again, this time Chelsea man Madueke supplying a low cross which Jones impudently turned home with a heel flick.

Carsley’s men were running riot when Madueke slipped in Ramsey to crash home another.

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Four goals flattered the hosts but there was no doubt Carsley’s men deserved the win after their impressive second-half display.

It will give them renewed confidence ahead of this summer’s Euros, where getting out of the group stage will be the bare minimum after failing to do so in the last two tournaments.


Source: The Sun

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