Lee Carsley is desperate for more attackers for England Under 21s

Lee Carsley is desperate for more attacking options for England Under 21s’ crucial qualifiers in June… with Arsenal loanee Folarin Balogun his only option for the clash with Albania

  • Lee Carsley hopes to have more attacking options for key qualifiers in June
  • The U21s only boast one centre forward, Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun, at present
  • Carsley said his side must become more ruthless after the 4-1 win over Andorra
  • But he should have more options to choose from ahead of four summer qualifiers

Lee Carsley hopes to have more attacking options for England Under 21s’ crucial European Championship qualifiers in June.

The Young Lions only boast one natural centre forward, Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun — currently on loan at Middlesbrough — for Tuesday night’s qualifier in Albania.

Sheffield United’s Rhian Brewster is out for the rest of the season with a hamstring injury. 

Lee Carsley hopes to have more attackers for England Under 21s’ crucial qualifiers in June

Carsley, who could operate with a false No 9 on Tuesday night, said his side must become more ruthless after Friday’s 4-1 win over Andorra.

But England are hampered by a lack of options through the middle. Tyreece John-Jules — another Arsenal loanee, in his case at Sheffield Wednesday — is sidelined with a foot injury.

The manager should have more firepower to choose from ahead of four qualifiers in early June — against Czech Republic (who lead England’s qualifying group), Albania, Kosovo and Slovenia — that will shape their campaign.

‘We’ve been unfortunate to have injuries in that position. We’ve got No 9s injured or not quite ready yet,’ Carsley said.

‘Within the system, especially the U19s, we have four or five high-class No 9s that will potentially push this group.’

Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun, on loan at Middlesbrough, is the only option for the Albania qualifier

Carsley name-checked Liam Delap (left) of Manchester City’s and Tottenham’s Dane Scarlett

Carsley name-checked Liam Delap, 19, of Manchester City’s and 18-year-old Dane Scarlett at Tottenham as possible call-ups.

‘Giving those lads an extra nine or 10 months (to develop before a call-up) makes a big difference,’ added Carsley. ‘The level we’re trying to get these players to is unforgiving.’

Balogun, who scored the opener against Andorra, is also eligible to represent the USA and Nigeria.

The FA have recently seen Jamal Musiala and Yunus Musah switch allegiances after playing through England’s age groups. Balogun, 20, suggested he will remain an England player.

‘I wouldn’t really say it’s a difficult decision,’ he said. ‘The big thing with international football is to follow your heart.’ 




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