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Having defeated USA on Monday, England under-23 were narrowly beaten 2-1 by Germany in a hard fought contest that saw chances at a premium for both sides in their second match at the Five Nations Tournament in La Manga.
In testing conditions - a hard, bumpy pitch and a strong wind which favoured Germany in the first half and England in the second - Germany just edged the tie.
Both teams had chances in the first half with Marie Hourihan making two excellent saves to keep the scores level. In the second half, England had the wind behind their backs and started brightly for the first fifteen minutes, pinning the Germans back, but were unable to fashion a real clear cut chance.
As the game became more open, Germany stepped up their game and broke the deadlock in the 70th minute. From a wide free kick whipped in with pace, Lynda Shepherd got a final flick which saw the ball fly past Hourihan into her own net. With their tails up, Germany added a second four minutes later, a good flowing move from own half ending with a low shot into the corner of Hourihan's goal.
England refused to give up, continued to press and with two minutes remaining, Shepherd followed up a spilled Dani Bird effort to set up a frantic end to the game.
England under-20s again lost by the only goal in their second game, this time to the hosts at the Under-20 Four Nations Tournament in Chile. Just two days after losing to the USA, Natalhie Quezada scored for Chile after 24 minutes.
A crowd of over 6,000 watched the game in temperatures of over 30 degrees, and despite England's territorial dominance, Romina Parraguirre, the Chilean centre back, was equal to everything that Mo Marley's side threw at the hosts.
Chile's Head Coach Marta Tejedor acknowledged the fact that England were the better side but was understandably delighted. "This result was well over our expectations against an England side who were dominant," she said. "We tracked back well, held our positions, but when we were in possession of the ball, we didn't really hurt England, bar the goal which gave [Rebecca] Spencer in their goal no chance." (www.TheFA.com)
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