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Toulon Tournament: England U21s secure third successive title with 2-1 win over Mexico

Toulon Tournament: England U21s secure third successive title with 2-1 win over Mexico

Kieran Dowell was one of three Everton players in Aidy Boothroyd's starting line-upEngland Under-21s came from behind to beat Mexico and win their third straight Toulon Tournament in France.The Young Lions trailed to Roberto Alvarado's early goal but levelled when Middlesbrough defender Dael Fry took advantage of a goalkeeping mistake to poke home from close range.Everton's Kieran Dowell put them ahead just before half-time after he was set-up by Arsenal forward Eddie Nketiah.
Chelsea's Tammy Abraham hit the post as Aidy Boothroyd's side clung on to win.It is more positive evidence of England's strength in the age groups below the senior team after they also won the Under-20 and Under-17 World Cups last year.Five of the players involved against Mexico started for Paul Simpson's side when they beat Venezuela 1-0 in South Korea just short of a year ago.They rode their luck against in temperatures approaching 30C against a side Boothroyd had warned would be "lively".Mexico were a constant threat via the tournament's top goalscorer Eduardo Aguirre, who created his side's opener, and Francisco Cordoba forced a strong save from Freddie Woodman with a powerful drive after half an hour.But England had plenty of players with Premier League experience and used that to slow down the game after the break, taking their time over free-kicks and throws as their opponents fought for a way back.It may have been a calmer finale had Abraham done better with the goal at his mercy after a good run by Dowell.Instead the reigning champions had to continue defending in the four minutes of added time, as Leicester City's Hamza Choudhury came on to help them see the game out.Skipper Lewis Cook, who has made 47 Premier League appearances for Bournemouth, was named the tournament's second best player, while Newcastle's Woodman won best goalkeeper.The best player award went to Mexico's Diego Lainez on his 18th birthday.Scotland, who England beat in their semi-final, missed out on clinching third spot in tournament after losing to Turkey 5-3 on penalties.
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