Home Sports Israel U21 0 – 3 England U21

Israel U21 0 – 3 England U21

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Israel U21 0 – 3 England U21

England booked their ticket to the European U21 Championship final for the first time since 2009 with a 3-0 semi-final victory over Israel in Georgia.

The Young Lions last won the competition in 1984 but extended their winning streak in the competition to five games as they eased past Israel to reach Saturday’s final, where they will play Spain or Ukraine.

Morgan Gibbs-White atoned for an early missed penalty by heading England in front three minutes before the interval at the Batumi Arena.

Cole Palmer effectively put the game beyond Israel after a lengthy VAR check for offside when he doubled England’s lead just after the hour.

Substitute Cameron Archer sealed their passage to the final with an emphatic third in the 90th minute as England maintained their flawless record to reach the final.

Young Lions one step for U21 history

England's Morgan Gibbs-White celebrates after scoring his side's first goal during the Euro 2023 U21 Championship semifinal soccer match between Israel and England at the Batumi Arena stadium in Batumi, Georgia, Wednesday, July 5, 2023.(AP Photo/Tamuna Kulumbegashvili)
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Gibbs-White celebrates after scoring his side’s first goal during the Euro U21 Championship semi-final

Having already beaten Israel 2-0 in the group stage, the Young Lions were confident with Levi Colwill nodding over Gibbs-White’s early free-kick, but they should have taken the lead when Gibbs-White missed from the spot after 17 minutes.

It took four minutes for VAR to rule Anthony Gordon was fouled by Karm Jaber – after Emile Smith Rowe had a shot cleared off the line before hitting the post – only for Gibbs-White to fire wide.

It boosted Israel’s belief with England frustrated but Carsley’s men maintained their composure and Gibbs-White atoned for his miss three minutes before the break.

The Nottingham Forest midfielder ghosted in late to reach Palmer’s delivery and rose between two Israel defenders to nod the ball into the top corner from 12 yards.

England's players celebrate doubling their lead after VAR rules in favour of Cole Palmer
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England’s players celebrate doubling their lead after VAR rules in favour of Cole Palmer

The half ended with Israel refusing to press and England keeping the ball, barely moving, and they remained in control after the restart.

Smith Rowe scuffed a shot and Gordon saw an effort deflect wide but Palmer finally doubled the lead after 64 minutes.

Gibbs-White found Smith Rowe, who crossed for Manchester City forward Palmer to convert – only for the goal to initially be ruled out for offside.

Another long VAR check again went in England’s favour as Smith Rowe was adjudged to be onside and the goal stood.

There was still time for substitute Archer to add a third in stoppage time when he smashed in Palmer’s pass.

What’s next?

England will face Spain or Ukraine in the European Under-21 Championship final on Saturday at the Batumi Arena; kick-off 5pm.

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