Fulham's World Champion

Saturday 28 October 2017 17:47

England have won the Under-17 World Cup for the first time ever in Kolkata on Saturday evening. 

They beat Spain 5-2 with Fulham’s Steven Sessegnon helping reignite the Young Lions’ hopes after going two goals down in the first half.

It was a comeback of epic proportions, with Sessegnon providing two class assists to bring the teams level after Sergio Gomez put the Spaniards in a commanding position.

It was Rhian Brewster who put away the first goal, and Morgan Gibbs-White who scored the second.

A perfect second half display saw England put their noses in-front, with Phil Foden scoring a brace and Marc Guehi getting one from a set piece.

England lost the European Championship final on penalties to Spain this summer, and this was the perfect opportunity to go one further.

The Young Lions almost scored in the first minute, Gibbs-White forced a save from Alvaro Fernandes from close range as Brewster crossed into the box.

However, it was Spain who took the lead in the 10th minute. Barcelona’s Gomez scored his third of the tournament and first of the final.

Juan Miranda crossed the ball into the box, and Cesar Gelabert knocked the ball forward to Gomez, he flicked his shot into the back of the net to take the lead.

Sessegnon had a chance at goal himself in the 23rd minute, racing down the right hand side of the pitch in acres of space, he cut in on Cesar and rocketed a shot with his left wide of the post, it was England’s best chance since the opening minute.

Spain doubled their advantage in the 31st minute and it was the same two Spanish front men who came together, Cesar with some fancy footwork chipped the ball to Gomez who slammed it into the back of the net.

The goal was against the run of play, as England were dominating possession and territory, the Spanish were clinical.

Two minutes before the break, Callum Hudson-Odoi cut in from the left, and at the edge of the area rattled the post. England were starting to dominate the game.

England crucially pulled one back going into half time. Sessegnon took the ball and beat Gomez in a one on one, and whipped a cross in from the right.

Brewster rifled his shot into the back of the net to put the Young Lions back in the match. It was Brewster’s eighth of the tournament and Sessegnon’s fourth assist.

England finally found their equaliser they deserved in the 58th minute. Sessegnon with another vital assist, latched onto a through ball on the right wing and picked out Wolverhampton Wanderer’s Gibbs-White who shot on target, beating the keeper to make it 2-2.

In the 71st minute England made the impossible happen, they came from two goals down to put their noses ahead for the first time in the World Cup final.

Hudson-Odoi raced down the left wing, looked up and curled a ball across goal to the back post where Foden was sprinting onto the ball, he confidently slotted to take the lead.

73 minutes in Curtis Anderson came off his line and missed the ball completely, Sessegnon was called into action and made a goal line clearance to keep the Young Lions’ tenuous advantage.

The match was sealed in the 84th minute, Joel Latibeaudiere headed across goal from a Hudson-odoi free kick, Jonathan Panzo kept the ball alive before Guehi stabbed the ball past Fernadez to make it 4-2.

The cherry was put on the cake in the 88th minute and Enlgand could start celebrating. Hudson-Odoi saw Foden racing down the right and sent a long pinpoint ball forward.

Foden being chased down shot early, beating Fernandez for the 5th time in 90 minutes to complete the most remarkable of comebacks.

The full time whistle blew and the team sprinted down the pitch to celebrate with the bench. Brewster with his eight goal of the tournament won the Golden Boot.

It is the second England youth team to win a World Cup in 2017 with the Under-20s achieving the same feat. Fulham have had two other International Champions in 2017, with Steven’s brother, Ryan, and team mate Tayo Edun winning the Under-19 European Championships this summer.

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