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Dublin: 12°C Thursday 13 May 2021

France side featuring Theo Zidane earn a draw against England in Longford

A first-half penalty from Arsenal’s Sam Greenwood was cancelled out by PSG’s Adil Aouchiche.

Theo Zidane of France in possession, with England's Jensen Weir paying close attention.
Theo Zidane of France in possession, with England's Jensen Weir paying close attention.
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

JUST LIKE THE hosts, England had to settle for a point after conceding a late equaliser in their opening game of the 2019 U17 European Championships.

Arsenal’s Sam Greenwood had put the English ahead against France with a first-half penalty, but a goal from Adil Aouchiche of Paris Saint-Germain with 11 minutes remaining saw the game at the City Calling Stadium end in a draw.

Kick-off in the Group B fixture had been delayed after the officials took a wrong turn at Kinnegad on their way to the home of Longford Town FC.

When the match finally began half an hour behind schedule, France lined out with a Zidane in their number 10 shirt. Theo, son of the legendary Zinedine, is currently on the books at Real Madrid, where his father recently returned for a second spell as manager.

England went in front on 34 minutes when Manchester City striker Cole Palmer was fouled in the box by Georginio Rutter of Rennes. Greenwood slotted home the penalty.

England’s lead stood until the 79th minute. Theo Zidane may be the standout name in the French team, but the man who replaced him as a 59th-minute substitute proved to be the hero.

After a scramble in the box, Aouchiche poked home the equalising goal from close range. France applied the pressure late on in search of a winner, but 1-1 was how it finished.

In today’s other Group B game, Netherlands recorded a 2-0 win over Sweden in Waterford. Ajax striker Brian Brobbey gave the holders the lead just after the hour-mark, and Chelsea defender Ian Maatsen doubled their advantage a minute later.

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Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

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Paul Dollery

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