Chelsea News: Tammy Abraham praised after England Under-21 beat Slovakia | Football | Sport

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Chelsea striker Abraham did not score for England but helped Aidy Boothroyd’s side to a vital win in the Euro Under-21 Championship.

The Young Lions went behind midway through the first half when Martin Chrien looped a header over new Everton signing Jordan Pickford.

But they looked like a different side after half time, equalising through Swansea centre-back Alfie Mawson before Nathan Redmond’s superb solo effort put England into the lead.

Abraham was substituted late on but did enough for former Under-21 boss to be pleased with what he saw. 

“I’ve got to say, Abraham was very good,” Pearce said on Sky Sports.

“He’s been up there on his own, he’s not got his goal over the two games but I tell you what he hasn’t half worked hard for the side.

“Yeah I think he did (have more options around him). When you play up there on your own, it’s not easy. 

“The formation he picked with Redmond being a bit closer to him, I’m not sure whether it really, really worked. Certainly in the first half we didn’t see any improvement. 

“So for me Tammy’s up there on his own, he’s got to hold it up, he was getting roughed up a bit as well by the defenders. 

“The ball sticks 99 per cent of the time so I’m impressed and we need to keep him fully fit in this tournament if we are going to progress.”

Former Liverpool goalkeeper Kirkland was equally impressed with the showing from the Chelsea man, who spent last season on loan at Bristol City.

“Yeah I totally agree with Stuart, I thought he was brilliant,” he said.

“A lot of things stuck, he’s a big powerful boy. He can see a pass as well.”

Victory puts qualification from the group stages almost in England’s own hands and Boothroyd was delighted with the second half performance.

“I think the response of the players in the second half is the important thing,” the manager said.

“I thought in the first half we had lots of possession, we controlled long periods but we didn’t really hurt them apart from a few long shots and a couple of crosses. We didn’t have that final ball. 

“In the second half we kept the ball really well, made good decisions on when to go wide, our full-backs delivered some really good balls in and managed to score a couple of goals.

“Disappointed to concede from a set piece, considering how much we worked on them, but we will enjoy the moment.”