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Thursday 16 February 2012

Academy stars earn England win in Spain

England's Under-16s leave it late to beat Spanish counterparts

Kenny Swain's England's Under-16 side also won the Victory Shield in October 2011

Premier League Academy stars helped England's Under-16 side to a superb 1-0 victory over their Spanish counterparts in Madrid on Wednesday.

Everton's George Green was England's match-winner, the striker coming off the bench at half-time to curl a shot past Spain keeper Guillermo Lara in the last minute.

"The performance was good, so to score in the last minute was fully deserved"
- Kenny Swain

"It was a great finish from George, so I'm pleased for him," England U16 Head Coach Kenny Swain told the FA's official website.

"It was a good result for us and the performance was good, so to score in the last minute was fully deserved.

"It was a real international test for us and it was one that everyone was really looking forward to, because it's always a challenge when you're playing Spain.

"It was a brave performance and they say fortune favours the brave, so it was one of those as the lads were brave enough to keep going for it."

All 18 members of England's touring party took part in the match against Spain at Las Rozas, under the watchful eye of Swain and his assistant Noel Blake.

The boys - 12 of whom play in the Academies at Barclays Premier League clubs - flew out to Spain at the start of the week and played the match after a few days of training.

Seven Barclays Premier League clubs are represented in Spain, with three from Chelsea, two from Arsenal, West Brom and Everton and one each from Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester City.

The England Under-16s are next in action at the end of March, when they take part in the Montaigu Tournament in France.

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Key Points

  • England Under-16s beat Spain 1-0 in Madrid
  • Everton's George Green scores last-minute winner
  • Twelve players representing Barclays Premier League clubs involved for England