Eddie Nketiah became England Under-21’s leading goalscorer as they beat Turkey at Molineux to book their place at next year’s European Championship.
Nketiah missed a penalty in the 84th minute but redeemed himself minutes after the miss with a calm chip over Turkey goalkeeper Altay Bayindir. England went ahead through a Huseyin Turkmen’s own goal, who deflected Ryan Sessegnon’s cross into his own net.
Halil Dervisoglu scored a consolation for Turkey after his penalty was saved by Sheffield United shot-stopper Aaron Ramsdale. England have been on a sensational form of late, winning seven out of their last eight games to qualify for next year’s European Championship.
The only result which robbed them of a win came against Andorra, in a shock 3-3 draw. However, Aidy Boothroyd’s men have claimed an all-important place in the upcoming tournament with three games to spare. They are also leading the pack in their group.
Jude Bellingham was the one player in midfield who dominated but it was Spurs’ Ryan Sessegnon, on loan at Hoffenheim, whose cross led to an own-goal by Turkey’s Turkmen.
Eddie Nketiah is now level on the goal-scoring charts with Alan Shearer and Francis Jeffers as the Young Lions’ top scorer. Nketiah, who captained the side, told BT Sport: “It is amazing. It is nice to get the three points but to beat the record is a dream come true and a proud moment for me and my family. There are still games left to add to that.
“I was disappointed with the penalty but I made sure I stayed cool when the chance fell to me and it was a nice finish.”
Boothroyd added: “Eddie Nketiah is in esteemed company with Alan Shearer. He is a terrific player and I genuinely think if he can have the career Alan has had, he will have done really well.”