VALLETTA: England won the European Under-17 crown for the first time in four years after beating Holland 4-1 in a penalty shoot-out after a 1-1 draw in the final.
Chelsea’s Dominic Solanke put England ahead and Everton’s Jonjoe Kenny converted the winning penalty. Solanke struck on 25 minutes with Jari Schuurman equalising just before half-time.
Manager John Peacock’s England had been beaten 2-0 by the Dutch in a ‘dead game’ in the group phase, with both teams having already qualified. Wins over tournament hosts Malta and Turkey put England into the semi-finals where they beat Portugal 2-0.
In the shootout skipper Ryan Ledson, of Everton, put England in front, Newcastle keeper Freddie Woodman then made a superb save to maintain the lead. Taylor Moore, who plays for French club Lens – he is English by birth but raised in France – made it 2-0.
Schuurman pulled one back with the Dutchmen’s second penalty, only for Middlesbrough midfielder Callum Cooke to smash home England’s third.
Calvin Verdonk then shot badly so Kenny’s successful kick – four out of four for England – made them champions.
England last won the European title in 2010 when Andre Wisdom and Connor Wickham scored the goals that gave them a 2-1 victory over Spain in the final.
That side contained the likes of Ross Barkley – who will go with the full England squad to this summer’s World Cup in Brazil – West Brom striker Saido Berahino and Stoke keeper Jack Butland.