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Lees calls on England to seize initiative

Published: Tuesday 28 May 2013, 13.00CET
Part of an England side on a nine game winning streak without conceding, Tom Lees urges Stuart Pearce's team to take this summer's finals "by the scruff of the neck".
 

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Published: Tuesday 28 May 2013, 13.00CET

Lees calls on England to seize initiative

Part of an England side on a nine game winning streak without conceding, Tom Lees urges Stuart Pearce's team to take this summer's finals "by the scruff of the neck".

A relative newcomer to the England set-up, defender Tom Lees is convinced Stuart Pearce's side have what it takes to win this summer's UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

Lees, who has just completed his second full season as a Leeds United AFC regular, is a new addition to Pearce's squad but started England's most recent friendly – a 4-0 defeat of Austria – and has been confirmed in their 23-man finals party. He has, therefore, contributed to a remarkable nine-game winning streak without conceding a goal.

"I have never really played for England before this age group," said Lees, 22. "I know that a lot of them have come through together, through the previous year groups, but this is my first involvement. To come in and get settled in straight away was pretty good.

"I think we've really got to go out there and be strong mentally and physically, and really take the group by the scruff of the neck. We've got a lot of good attacking players in the squad, so we've got plenty of goals in us. As you have seen in the qualifiers and in the friendlies in the last couple of months, we've kept a lot of clean sheets. If we can continue to do that, especially against the big boys in the tournament, then obviously that's a recipe for success."

Watch the video above for the full interview with Lees.

Last updated: 28/05/13 13.50CET

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