Pickford The Hero As England Draw

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Jordan Pickford saved a penalty to earn England a goalless draw in their European Under-21 Championship opener against Sweden. 

With no breakthrough in Poland going into the final nine minutes, the former Sunderland stopper, who only completed a Club-record move to Goodison Park on Thursday, turned away Linus Wahlqvist’s spot-kick before also saving Carlos Strandberg’s follow-up. 

Pickford played the entire 90 minutes, as did his Everton teammate Mason Holgate. 

England, managed by Aidy Boothroyd, tried to take the game to the Swedes and hit the bar when Ben Chilwell’s effort deflected up on to the woodwork. 

At the other end, Holgate produced a well-timed slide tackle to halt Strandberg as he looked certain to go through on goal.  

England next face Slovakia on Monday, before completing their group A campaign against Poland next Thursday. 

Slovakia play Poland in Friday’s other game at 7.45pm (UK).

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