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Under-21 Group B reaction

"We knew whoever we drew would be very difficult games," said England coach Gareth Southgate, summing up the mood among the four sides that will contest Group B.

Southgate ‘excited’ about U21 test

Gareth Southgate, England coach
We knew whoever we drew would be very difficult games. We have seen quite a bit of Portugal already, because we're playing them in a friendly this month, so we know their qualities. Now we have the chance to prepare for the other games. Of course, Sweden beat France, which was a big result. We're excited about the tournament; we are looking forward to it.

I don't think any of the teams will consider themselves favourites; every cycle is different. Italy of course made the final last time, and some of those players are still eligible. So we're not really too concerned about who we play; we believe in the team we have. We know whoever we are playing will be tough fixtures, so we're excited to be here, and looking forward to it.

Luigi Di Biagio, Italy coach
We have eight teams here who are all very strong, so it was obvious that any team drawn in our group would be a difficult task. They're three teams which have had a great qualification campaign, knocking out big names like Croatia, the Netherlands and France. That shows the strength of the teams we will face in our group. But I'm happy, and we know our own strengths. If you want to go a long way, you have to beat any team. So we're happy.

The opening match is the most important, because that’s when you set the table. We now have time to get well prepared for the opponents we will face.

Rui Jorge, Portugal coach
It's hard to be lucky when there are national teams of this quality in the final stage. It's the group we were drawn in, it's the group we will study, and it's the group we will try to get through. At this final stage, it doesn't make any difference – all the teams are sure to have a lot of quality. They all put in a great effort to be here, and they all deserve to be here, so all the matches will be difficult.

Sweden 'confident' after draw

Håkan Ericson, Sweden coach
It's a very, very interesting group – a very tough one, of course. [It's] three great football countries, and if you look at their results in qualification, [they recorded] very strong results. Portugal took all the points in qualification, so of course it's a strong group.

Of course I think Sweden are the weakest team – I think so. But we have shown that we can do everything in [big] games, so I look forward to it.