Internationals: Redan skippers Dutch to U-17 glory

It was delight for the Dutch in the Under-17 European Championship final as our teenage striker Daishawn Redan helped them to the title following a penalty shootout victory over Italy.

The Netherlands had finished top of a group featuring Spain, Germany and Serbia before shootout wins over the Republic of Ireland and England sent them into last night’s final in Rotherham. Redan lined up in attack and captained the side to a first European title at the Under-17 age group since 2012, when Nathan Ake was Dutch skipper.

It was a topsy-turvy contest to bring the curtain down on a tournament hosted in England for the first time since 2001, with the Italians initially falling behind early in the second half as Redan turned provider to assist Jurrien Maduro. Two goals in three minutes turned the final on its head as Italy went 2-1 up before the Dutch struck back six minutes from time to set up a third successive shootout.

They had controversially beaten Ireland in the quarter-finals on penalties; Redan’s spot-kick was saved but the referee ruled the Irish keeper had encroached off his line too early and handed him a second yellow card. That led to a defender having to don the gloves for Redan’s retake, which was confidently dispatched after a lengthy wait.

There was less drama in the semi-final victory over England, a narrow triumph in sudden death, and Italy’s two early missed kicks meant the Dutch recorded an emphatic 4-1 shootout win.

‘A final is a big game so for us it was just do your own thing and play as you always play,’ said Redan after lifting the trophy. ‘We are happy now, I just don’t know what to say.

‘I lost the UEFA Youth League final [with Chelsea] and that was a bad feeling for me but now I feel a little bit better. My season is done now – I can chill!’

International football at the younger age groups continues in the coming days with England Under-18s in China for the Panda Cup, which begins against Uruguay this Wednesday. Tariq Lamptey, Jon Panzo, Conor Gallagher and George McEachran are the Chelsea representatives in Neil Dewsnip’s squad.

Aidy Boothroyd’s England Under-21s then begin their quest to win the Toulon Tournament for the third year running when they head to France for the annual competition, which kicks off at the weekend. The young Lions are in Group A alongside China, Mexico and Qatar, with their opening game against the Chinese this Saturday 26 May. Jake Clarke-Salter, Jay Dasilva, Fikayo Tomori and Tammy Abraham were named in the squad last week as Chelsea once again hold the biggest club representation.

For Scotland, who join France, South Korea and Togo in Group B, Harvey St Clair and Billy Gilmour will travel across the English Channel.