‘Is it winning or developing?’: Aidy Boothroyd defends his job as England U21 manager despite another early exit from the euro, insisting he ‘do whatever it takes’ to provide Gareth Southgate with senior players
- England Under-21 left the European Championship again in the group stage
- Aidy Boothroyd has overseen two first-round Euros exits as Young Lions boss
- The 50-year-old defended his job as an under-21 manager against poor results
- Boothroyd says he did a good job preparing the young stars for senior football
Aidy Boothroyd has defended his job as the England Under-21 manager following another exit from the European Championships – insisting he do well in producing players ready for the Three Lions senior team.
The Young Lions finished at the bottom of their Under-21 group stage for the second consecutive edition of the tournament, as Wednesday’s 2-1 win over Croatia was not enough to lead them to the knockout stage.
Boothroyd now faces an uncertain future as manager of the Under-21s with his contract expiring this summer, but the 50-year-old insisted that despite poor results, he is still doing a good job preparing players for senior international football. .
Aidy Boothroyd defended his job as boss of England under 21 after another euro exit
The Young Lions crashed again this month in the group stage of the Euro
Boothroyd said after Croatia’s defeat: ‘I ask a lot of questions about my future. The other important thing we’re talking about is the role – is it winning or developing? It’s a bit foggy at the moment.
‘I know what it is, the rest of the coaches are doing it – we’re part of a path to producing players for Gareth. I am sure I will do whatever it takes or this job.
When it comes to winning at Under-21 level and Gareth rightly picking your best players, it’s about producing players from 15 to 21 and up to the seniors.
‘I can’t do anything but what I’m doing now, help players through. These horrifying experiences and when you learn from them nothing beats being beaten in the last few minutes of a game when we were excellent.
Boothroyd claims he did a good job of preparing the young English stars for senior level
“We played great football, created opportunities, hit the bar twice tonight and were defeated with a bolt of lightning that if the boy tried a hundred more times, he wouldn’t be able to do it again.”
The Under-21 squad has acted as the path of several senior England stars, with captain Harry Kane, Phil Foden, John Stones, Jesse Lingard and James Ward-Prowse acting as some of the players to progress from youth to senior level. to make. .
But England was one of the favorites to win the European Championships, entering the tournament with several players playing for top clubs.
Boothroyd selected Chelsea’s Callum Hudson-Odoi, Arsenal midfielder Emile Smith Rowe, Everton defender Ben Godfrey and Liverpool’s Curtis Jones from a slew of Premier League players.
Boothroyd chose many Premier League stars to join his young squad, including Callum Hudson-Odoi
England beat Croatia 2-1 on Wednesday, but it wasn’t enough to advance to the knockouts
But the Young Lions started the tournament terribly by losing their first two games to Switzerland and Portugal, and failed to shoot for goal in either game.
Before the game in Croatia, Boothroyd claimed the England under-21 track was the ‘impossible’ job in football, but England nearly reached the June knockout rounds of the European tournament on Wednesday night.
England needed a win of two or more goals to progress, but England were minutes away from reaching the final rounds after Ebere Eze scored a penalty and Curtis Jones added a second with 16 minutes to go.
Phil Foden (right) is one of many under-21 stars who have emerged for the first time in recent years
But Domagoj Bradaric’s injury-time stunner broke the hearts of England and put Croatia through to goal difference.
Boothroyd admitted that discussions about his future will take place and that the decision rests with England manager Gareth Southgate and FA Chief Technical Officer John McDermott.
The 50-year-old added: ‘Gareth and John will allow some time to sort our thoughts. We are about to review the senior team and young people under 21.
“I can’t spend time on that, but in a week or a few weeks, depending on what they have.”