danny rose

Qualifying crunch for duo

by Stuart Vose

Wickham and Rose set for Serbia showdown.

Connor Wickham and Danny Rose are all set for England under-21s’ crunch clash with Serbia tonight.

The young Lions face the Serbs in Krusevac later today defending a slender 1-0 lead following the first leg at Carrow Road.

A win or draw would secure England’s place at next summer’s Euro 2013 tournament in Israel.

But a defeat would see them leave with nothing and coach Stuart Pearce is aware of the fine margins.

”This is the most difficult tournament to try and qualify for,” Pearce told thefa.com.

“We have won eight of our nine games and it means absolutely nothing. 

“If we have a bad night, then some of my players might not play international football again. 

“We’re going to go out and attempt to take them on. The first goal will be really important. 

“If we can get the first goal and get our noses in front it’ll put a lot of pressure on them. We’ve managed to get a lead in the tie, and bring a clean sheet with us, which is important. 

“But it’s going to be a fantastic game for the players, it’s a tough place to come and play but it’s something we’re looking forward to and I’m looking forward to seeing what they can deliver.” 

Pearce, whose side will step out in front of a sell-out 14,000 crowd tonight, added: “What do I expect? I expect us to win the game.

“When we enter a tournament, we show the players a route all the way to the final. We have got the opportunity here to get 50 per cent along the way to winning the tournament.”