Brawl erupts as Under-21s qualify

England U21s have qualified for next year's European Championships after beating Serbia 1-0 in Krusevac to win their play-off 2-0 on aggregate.

Last Updated: 16/10/12 at 20:17 Post Comment

Wickham: Celebrates his injury-time goal

Wickham: Celebrates his injury-time goal

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

But the game ended in unsavoury scenes as England's Danny Rose was sent off after reacting angrily to alleged racist abuse.

Players then appeared to be pelted with missiles after Connor Wickham struck in injury time of the second leg to book England's trip to next summer's finals in Israel.

Supporters came onto the field, scuffles broke out and England's Rose was sent off after the final whistle. He reacted angrily by kicking away the ball and appeared to indicate he had been racially abused as he left the pitch.

Steve Wigley, one of the England coaching staff, also appeared to become caught up in the trouble as the players left the field.

The ugly scenes overshadowed another fine display of defensive resilience from England.

Stuart Pearce's men recorded a sixth clean sheet in seven outings to hold out the Serbs on a wet and windy night at the Mladost Stadium in Krusevac.

Marvin Sordell hit the post early on but, until Wickham came off the bench to stroke into an empty net late on, the game was largely about England's defensive effort.

Serbia had shown from the outset they intended to be more positive than they were in Norwich last week and, with Nikola Ninkovic coming into the side, they had a much greater cutting edge.

But it was England who had the first serious opportunity as Sordell hit the woodwork after nine minutes.

Captain Jordan Henderson found the Bolton forward with a superb through-ball but Sordell cracked his shot against the near post after neatly cutting inside Slobodan Medojevic to create space 12 yards out.

Serbia goalkeeper Branimir Aleksic looked uncertain throughout but escaped punishment after spilling a Henderson corner and was then fortunate to earn a free-kick as Craig Dawson jumped to reach a Wilfried Zaha free-kick.

The hosts showed their danger as Nemanja Kojic found space down the right and pulled the ball back for the livewire Ninkovic, who shot tamely at Jack Butland.

Luka Milivojevic flashed a volley wide after a Nemanja Gudelj throw-in was only partly cleared by Steven Caulker.

Serbia went closer as Henderson's headed clearance from Darko Lazovic's free-kick found its way to Ninkovic at the far post but his shot went across goal and wide.

Aleksic had another lucky escape as Dawson beat him to a Rose free-kick on the edge of the area but the England defender could not keep his header on target.

Lazovic found room on the edge of the England box but his attempt to curl a shot into the top corner was easily dealt with by Butland.

After a brief hold-up when one of several flares lit by Serbian fans found its way into Aleksic's goal area, the hosts continued to press as Ninkovic beat Adam Smith but fired wide from distance.

Further efforts came in from Kojic and Milivojevic as Serbia ended the first half on top but Butland was not tested.

England had a scare early in the second period as Kojic broke clear but Smith got back well to cut him off and was harshly booked for his trouble.

Ninkovic went close again after the ball fell to him outside the area but his swirling effort was well pushed put by Butland.

Ninkovic turned provider as he picked out Filip Malbasic with a fine ball but England were relieved to see the substitute flagged offside after Ognjen Mudrinski took a needless touch.

Thomas Ince broke clear as England mounted a rare attack but Zaha stumbled as he latched onto his cross and was bemused to be booked for diving.

Aleksic went forward as Serbia had a late chance from a free-kick but England broke away through Ince, who slid in Wickham, prompting the mayhem that followed.

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

A

ll he wants are sharks with frickin lazers on their heads. Is that too much to ask?

mufc phil
Bomb threat on FIFA D-day

W

hy is the dinosaur trying to hold on to this.... Just leave... No one wants you in this position you corrupt loser. Let someone else take over....

arsenal121
Defiant Sepp blames minority

N

ow is the time for Allardyce to finally get a chance at a big club please. He is likely to have a number of great offers for his services this summer, but who will he choose? Will it be Liverpool, Real Madrid, Dortmund or Man City?

medina_sod
Allardyce leaves West Ham

Footer 365

Craig Cathcart out to build on a special 12 months

Northern Ireland and Watford defender Craig Cathcart wants to build on a memorable year for club and country.

Tim Sherwood defends Arsene Wenger's record at Arsenal

Tim Sherwood has praised Arsene Wenger's Arsenal record ahead of the FA Cup final after past criticism of the Frenchman.

Arsene Wenger keen to focus on future ahead of FA Cup final

Arsene Wenger will continue to look to the future, rather than reflect on past glories, if Arsenal can win his sixth FA Cup.

Mail Box

Players Must Stand Up For Qatar Boycott

Players, not bureaucrats, hold the key to boycotting Qatar. Also in the afternoon mailbox: Wenger is right to rotate, Zlatan can dribble, and it's Barca v Ajax in the budget final...

What Would You Do If You Were Blatter?

Step into Sepp's shoes, is the invitation from one mailboxer. Also: United already have their new number one, Rodgers deserves time, and the best Budget XI so far...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company