England’s Under-21 suffered an almighty meltdown as they lost a two-goal lead to a draw in Slovenia.
The Young Lions quickly took control, leading by two goals in 15 minutes to score their first two chances.
England appeared to have won a penalty when a brilliant Oliver Skipp ball sent Rhian Brewster to goal and he was tripped, but Conor Gallagher pounced on the loose ball and removed the need for a shot on goal finishing for his first goal at this level for almost two years.
Cole Palmer had scored on his debut against Kosovo last month and made sure he didn’t have the same kind of expectation as Gallagher, collecting a compound finish after recovering the cross from Luke Thomas.
After barely touching in the first half thanks to a dominating performance from England, Slovenia came out on a swing after the break and after a succession of corners rejected by Mark Spanring.
England looked a bit stunned by Slovenia’s stepping up and the hosts were quickly tied as Dusan Stojinovic returned home from a corner.
Here’s how Jack Rosser rated the Young Lions …
He wasn’t really at fault for either goal, did well otherwise.
Solid but unspectacular hour from behind Norwich. Must offer more to keep its place on Livramento.
Composed on the ball but should have done much better at the back for both goals.
Escaped a penalty for an early challenge but a decent performance.
Dominated on the left in the first half and swung in fantastic crosses, including the assist for Palmer’s goal.
Outstanding midfield in the first half and opened Slovenia in preparation for Gallagher’s goal but failed to meet the challenge after the break.
Demonstrated great energy to step on the loose ball and score the first goal. Passed out in the second half.
Neat but banal performance from the young Aston Villa.
Found himself in decent positions in the first half but didn’t have the expected impact on play, drew a late save from the Slovenian goalkeeper.
The Sheffield United striker seems utterly lacking in confidence. Procrastinated on the ball and never really looked like a threat.
Made a good start and doubled England’s lead with a goal well taken, but quickly faded in the second half.
Added energy to the right in place of Aarons and provided a threat with his crosses.