Pearce expects tough Dutch work-out

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England Under-21 boss Stuart Pearce expects newcomers to his squad such as Jack Wilshere to be given a genuine test of their credentials against Holland.

Pearce's youngsters reached the final of the European Championships this summer and 10 remain for the next campaign, with the friendly at Groningen's Euroborg Stadion part of the preparations.

"We're playing against one of the top-line nations in Europe," Pearce said.

"The good thing is over the last six months, we've taken on some big nations.

"This is going to be a very important game for us, we're starting again with a new group of players, a new campaign and straight after this game we're going to be in a situation where we're into five qualifiers in a short space of time."

They will play Macedonia twice, Greece, Lithuania and Portugal before Christmas, giving Pearce a chance to look at the likes of Wilshere.

Pearce has called up the 17-year-old following an injury to Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba ahead of the Holland clash.

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Bolton Wanderers
Premier League
Fabrice Muamba
Stuart Pearce
Jack Wilshere

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