Aidy Boothroyd expects England improvement


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England Under-21 boss Aidy Boothroyd admits his side will need to further raise their game if they are to beat hosts Poland in their final group match at the European Championship.

The Young Lions recovered from a tame performance in their opening stalemate against Sweden to claim a 2-1 win over Slovakia on Monday, with Southampton’s Nathan Redmond grabbing the winner.

They were far from their best in Kielce although they now know victory against the Poles will see them through to the knockout stage.

The Kolporter Arena will again be the venue against the hosts and despite receiving a kind welcome in the last week or so, England are sure to find themselves up against a hugely partisan crowd on Thursday.

Speaking after Monday’s win, Boothroyd said he was pleased with the manner in which his side stuck to their task against the Slovakians, but has admitted they will need to further raise their game for their third and final Group A encounter.

“It was difficult – Slovakia are a very underrated team. We knew we had to stop their key players tonight,” he told

“We had a lot of possession in the first half without penetrating; in the second half we were more of a threat and scored two goals against a team who had the crowd behind them.

“[Poland on Thursday] will be difficult. We’ve been welcomed into the city by our hosts and I’m sure it will be a good game and a good football match.

We’ll have to be at our best.” England are currently 8.00 to win the European Championship, with Spain the 3.50 favourites ahead of Germany at 4.50.

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