Football

Pearce: Welsh showed bit of quality

Published Add your comment

England Under-21 coach Stuart Pearce paid Wales the ultimate compliment after his side's 3-2 UEFA Championship play-off first leg win in Cardiff.

Pearce admitted that his side had been forced to battle right to the end at Ninian Park by a side he rates as the best of its kind in recent memory.

"Welsh football at under-21 level, with the players they have, is the best I have ever known it," said Pearce. "Even if Wales' more experienced players had been out there, they would not have done any better."

Wales had several of their best under-21s taken by national boss John Toshack for the World Cup qualifier against Liechtenstein.

But Pearce said: "I know John Toshack has taken a lot of their better players for the senior side, but I am not sure any of them could have done any better than the lads Wales had on show."

Pearce claimed that his young side had been given a wake-up call by a battling Welsh outfit.

Wales were ahead through Simon Church early on and despite goals from David Wheater and Adam Johnson, the 19 year-old Reading striker struck again minutes before the break.

England had to fight for their lives in this first-leg, and it took a Gabriel Agbonlahor flick with 29 minutes left to claim victory and a major advantage in Tuesday's second-leg at Villa Park.

Pearce admitted: "My team were told in the dressing room straight afterwards that they still have hard work to do. This is about professionalism now and we had a big, big wake-up call in the first-leg.

"The game had everything, and it was just what I thought it would be like. Wales are a very good side with spirit, as are England. The game was a credit to both teams."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2008, All Rights Reserved.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms

Topics:
Sunderland
Reading
Internationals
Gabriel Agbonlahor
Football
Cardiff City
Stuart Pearce
David Wheater
John Toshack
Simon Church
Adam Johnson

Article Comments

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author

DISCLAIMER

This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again