England 1-1 Spain

Welbeck, Pearce take positives from draw

June 12, 2011

Goalscorer Danny Welbeck hopes England can build on the 1-1 draw against Spain in their European Under-21 Championship opener in Herning.

Danny Welbeck secured a late point for England in Denmark
GettyImagesDanny Welbeck secured a late point for England in Denmark

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Completely outplayed from almost the first whistle, Stuart Pearce's Young Lions fell behind to Ander Herrera's 14th-minute goal, which he netted with his hand from point-blank range in Group B.

However, Welbeck, who appeared narrowly offside, popped up two minutes from time to slot home and snatch a priceless point.

The Manchester United striker, who spent last season on loan at Sunderland, told Sky Sports 1: "In the first half they took control of the game but in the second half we got more into it and had more possession.

"We created a few good chances and maybe could have stuck a couple away. It was important to get the goal at the end - now we've got to build on it. We're raring to go."

"They had a lot of the ball but didn't create too much. In the end I think we had the better chances. I think it was a deserved point," said Chris Smalling.

"At half-time the manager (Stuart Pearce) said we need to go after them. We did and they started to give the ball away. We got better as the game went on but didn't start the game like that. When we started to assert ourselves we played more in their box."

Pearce believed his team needed to show "a touch more arrogance".

"There's no doubt there's spirit in this camp - I've said it for a long time, I know they're never going to give up," he explained. "We probably needed to show a touch more arrogance when we had the ball. Spanish teams historically show that arrogance."

He continued: "As a learning curve for the players it was a fantastic evening...credit them for sticking in there.

"If we had the amount of possession they did I think the score would have been four or five nil to us. We have to learn the lessons - and we can play a lot better than that as a team and individually.

"Set plays are crucial and the timing of their goal wasn't good - I was disappointed with it. But for 90 minutes I thought my backline dealt with any problems quite comfortably."

Next up for England on Wednesday is a game against the Ukraine on Wednesday - and Pearce said: "It's all to play for and it'll go to the last game.

"We know it's a tough group and we need to be in the mix come that last game."