England U20s have won the World Cup with a 1-0 victory over Venezuela – their first win on the global stage since 1966.
The winning goal was scored by Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin in the 35th minute of the final in Suwon, South Korea, while Venezuela had a penalty saved and both sides hit the woodwork.
It was the first time an England side had reached a world final since Bobby Moore, Bobby Charlton, Geoff Hurst and company won the Jules Rimet Trophy at Wembley in 1966.
In a dramatic, open game, Paul Simpson’s Young Lions were indebted to Newcastle goalkeeper Freddie Woodman, who saved a penalty from Venezuela’s Adalberto Penaranda 16 minutes from the end.
England started brightly and had the first chance when Dominic Solanke fluffed his shot after a defensive blunder put him through on the Venezuela goalkeeper.
England continued to press, with Ademola Lookman forcing a flying save from Wuilker Farinez with a fierce shot from outside the area.
But the South Americans went even closer minutes later, when Ronaldo Lucena’s swerving free kick hit the post.
Congratulations to @England U20's who are World Cup winners. What an achievement lads 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼
— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 11, 2017
Calvert-Lewin broke the deadlock 10 minutes before the break, beating Farinez at the second attempt after reacting first to Lewis Cook’s half-cleared free kick.
Venezuela had more of the ball in the second half but England might have doubled their lead when Josh Onomah broke into the opposition half and, with no pass on, thumped a long-range shot against the bar.
England's Under-20s have won the World Cup. What a brilliant week it's been for the youth of our nation. Congratulations. 👏👏👏
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) June 11, 2017
The ball bounced agonisingly in front of the line and was cleared.
Venezuela then spurned a golden chance to equalise in the 74th minute when Woodman palmed away Penaranda’s penalty despite having initially dived in the opposite direction.
The victory is bound to focus attention on the underwhelming performances of the senior side at recent tournaments, especially the disappointing exit from last year’s European Championships after losing to Iceland.
It comes the day after England needed an added time goal by new captain Harry Kane to rescue a 2-2 draw against Scotland in Glasgow.