Thursday, 8 June 2017

Lewis Cook can captain an England side to a final today

It has been a roller coaster ride for Lewis Cook and his England U20 team-mates who have made it through to the semi-finals in South Korea where they face an Italian side who have defeated France and Zambia in the knockout phase. The semi-final is already a major achievement for the English players, but it is important they don't think the job is done yet and for Lewis Cook it is a great time to be right at the centre of all the action.

The match will be on TV on British Eurosport 2 from 11.45am. While most people will probably be working, or getting their vote done for the general election in the UK, it will be worth setting the record button to see how Lewis Cook and his team-mates do. The match will at least see England start with 11 against 11 as they had winger Josh Onomah sent off against Mexico and it took everything they had to scape past the Mexicans 1-0. Uruguay and Venezuela are in the other half of the draw.
There are a good spread of players from Premier League sides playing well in South Korea. Dominic Solanke is a Chelsea player who got the winner against Mexico, Adam Amstrong of Newcastle has also been catching the eye as England's number 9. Conquering the nerves have been something that few English sides have done over the years in tournament football, but coach Paul Simpson believes his side has what it takes to get to the final.

Lewis Cook would be the first senior Bournemouth player since Tommy Elphick to lift a football competition trophy and to do it wearing an England shirt would be quite something. I like the strain of good English players running through the Bournemouth teams, and with Jermain Defoe also set to join the club there is reason to believe that the talk around the dressing room on good international performances will inspire others to push harder at AFCB.  

In other news, AFCB have announced another pre-season fixture - Away at Portsmouth Sat 22 July 2017 3pm.

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