England’s Under-21s did not qualify from Group D in Euro 2021 after conceding a stoppage time goal of their 2-1 win over Croatia.
Domagoj Bradaric’s stoppage time strike left the Younger Lions out just as they seemed like they’d pulled off a shocking comeback.
An early Ebere Eze penalty kick and a second goal from Curtis Jones – sent off after the final whistle – ordered a last-eight tie with Spain in Might.
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The Younger Lions, who had lost their opening two Group D video games, wanted to win by two goals and hope Portugal beat Switzerland.
The Portuguese received 3-0 to the top of Group D however regardless of a a lot improved show, the last drive of Croatia’s Bradaric gasp sent by to the quarter-finals on the expense of England.
Jones and Dwight McNeil additionally hit the woodwork as England almost accomplished their victory against the umpire at Koper, however a defeat and an early exit put additional strain on Aidy Boothroyd’s place as manager.
They have been with out Tom Davies, Marc Guehi, Ben Godfrey and Emile Smith Rowe after failing late fitness assessments, whereas Callum Hudson-Odoi had already returned to Chelsea with a shoulder injury.
Understanding what was required to qualify, England began with extra verb and intent than of their earlier two video games in Slovenia.
Jones – making his first start within the event – instantly offered additional vitality and hit the crossbar from the sting of the world after a quick corner.
It was a pointy opening by the Younger Lions and they have been controversially rewarded by going forward after 12 minutes.
Eddie Nketiah went down under the challenge of Bartol Franjic within the field and, regardless of minimal contact, referee Hurt Osmers pointed to the spot.
It was delicate, however Eze sent Dominik Kotarski the wrong option to give England the right start.
But the Younger Lions did not construct on their benefit instantly and slowly Croatia started to seek out their momentum, giving England their first scare after 32 minutes.
Croatia’s captain Nikola Moro jumped into the world and his low cross discovered Dario Spikic eight yards out, just for the balloon midfielder over.
Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale then dropped a routine strike from Luka Ivanusec earlier than junior Dinamo Zagreb fired one other warning shot eight minutes earlier than the break.
Conor Gallagher and Japhet Tanganga played themselves into hassle and Ivanusec pointed to pinch the ball and burst in the direction of the sting of the field.
The midfielder solely had Ramsdale to beat however the keeper produced a great save to turn his low drive off.
With Croatia the higher side since falling behind, though Jones flashed a large shot just earlier than half-time, the Boothroyd side nonetheless had work to do and went for a second killer after the restart.
Igor Biscan’s males confirmed extra management within the first half however Kotarski needed to be alert to save Eze’s low free kick after 50 minutes.
Jones’ effort went vast earlier than Nketiah shot straight at Kotarski after being launched by Eze.
The Younger Lions continued to push for a moment and McNeil’s free kick hit a post after 63 minutes.
Croatia’s menace had pale however Ramsdale wanted to kick away Kristijan Bistrovic’s free-kick from 30 yards, with England additionally escaping when Ivanusec broke and dragged Moro vast.
However with 16 minutes remaining, Jones grabbed a moment that almost sent England by.
Substitute Rhian Brewster crossed for McNeil to carry the ball up and discovered Jones, who parked a low drive into the underside corner from 15 yards.
And but, just because it seemed just like the Younger Lions had pulled off the 2 goal victory they wanted, Bradaric rode in from the sting of the world within the first minute of stoppage time.
Liverpool’s Jones, who had beforehand been ordered, was proven a red card after the final whistle following hassle with celebrating Croatia’s players.