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England vs Germany facts

Previous meetings, form guides, links and trivia ahead of the 2023 EURO U21 group stage fixture.

Curtis Jones and England are already through to the last eight
Curtis Jones and England are already through to the last eight Tamara Kulumbegashvili

Having already secured first place in Group C, England will aim for a first UEFA European Under-21 Championship final tournament win against Germany whose prospects of joining them in the knockout phase are in peril ahead of their Matchday 3 meeting at the Batumi Arena.

Lee Carsley's England have sealed their place in the quarter-finals with a game to spare thanks to 2-0 victories against both Czechia and Israel, the latter secured through goals from Anthony Gordon (15) and Emile Smith Rowe (68).

Holders Germany are third in the section on one point, two behind second-placed Czechia, after a 1-1 draw against Israel and a 2-1 loss to the Czechs in which they conceded the decisive goal three minutes from time.

Germany are unbeaten in three previous finals fixtures against England, including victory in the 2009 final in Sweden and a penalty shoot-out triumph in the last four on their way to claiming another title six years ago.

While England are through to the quarter-finals as group winners, Germany must win and hope Czechia lose to Israel in the section's other Matchday 3 game. In that case Germany and Israel would be split for second place on overall goal difference, then overall goals scored, then disciplinary points, then coefficients.

Previous meetings

The teams have played 11 competitive fixtures at U21 level, with Germany registering two wins to England's four.

Germany prevailed in the most recent of those fixtures, however, winning 4-3 on penalties after a 2-2 draw in the 2017 semi-finals. Davie Selke gave Germany a 35th-minute lead only for strikes either side of half-time from Demarai Gray (41) and Tammy Abraham (50) to turn the match in England's favour. Felix Platte made it 2-2 with 20 minutes remaining and misses from Abraham and Nathan Redmond proved crucial in the shoot-out.

England have not lost any of the teams' six U21 EURO qualifying fixtures, winning three and drawing three.

England recorded a 3-0 aggregate win in the play-offs ahead of the 2007 tournament. Leighton Baines' goal gave England a 1-0 lead to take into the second leg in Germany, where Theo Walcott struck twice to help England progress to the final tournament at their opponents' expense.

However, in final tournament meetings, Germany are unbeaten (W1 D2), with that 2017 semi-final classed as a draw.

The teams met in the 2009 final in Malmö, Sweden. Gonzalo Castro (23), Mesut Özil (48) and Sandro Wagner (79, 84) got the goals in a 4-0 victory for Horst Hrubesch's side.

The teams had also previously met in the group stage in Sweden, playing out a 1-1 draw.

England triumphed 5-4 on aggregate in the two-legged final in 1982. After a 3-1 win at Bramall Lane, Sheffield, in late September, England clung on in the return in Bremen in mid-October despite a Pierre Littbarski hat-trick giving West Germany a 3-2 victory.

Their most recent meeting came in a friendly on 27 September 2022, also at Bramall Lane, where Felix Nmecha's goal gave Germany a 35th-minute lead only for Folarin Balogun (41) to level before the break, second-half strikes from Conor Gallagher (47) and Cole Palmer (90+5) securing a home victory. Germany's Ansgar Knauff, who was a late withdrawal from the finals squad, was dismissed for a second yellow card in the 97th minute.

Luca Netz scored twice in Germany's 3-3 draw against England in a U17 friendly on 10 October 2019. He was also on target in a 2-1 Germany win two days later.

Angel Gomes scored as England beat a Germany side featuring Yannik Keitel 8-1 in a U17 friendly on 3 October 2016.

Form guide


This is England's ninth successive final tournament campaign – the longest ongoing sequence in the competition – and an 11th overall; they last missed out in 2006.

Champions in 1982 and 1984, England also reached four further semi-finals in the first six editions of the European U21 Championship.

However, this is only the second time in their last seven finals campaigns that the Young Lions have progressed from the group stage, reaching the semi-finals in 2017. Going into this tournament they had won just four of their previous 19 finals matches, losing ten.

In 2021, a late Croatia goal in England's 2-1 Matchday 3 victory meant Aidy Bothroyd's side finished level on three points with their opponents but were eliminated on goals scored in a three-way head-to-head also involving Switzerland, finishing bottom of the section.

Before this tournament the win against Croatia was England's only victory in seven finals games (D2 L4).

Carsley's team won eight of their ten qualifiers to finish three points clear of Czechia in the 2023 preliminaries, although a 2-1 home loss to Slovenia in the last game in their group on 13 June 2022 ended England's record 54-game unbeaten run in U21 qualifying (W47 D7), dating back to 14 November 2011.

Balogun, who is not in the final tournament squad, was England's top scorer in qualifying with six goals. Taylor Harwood-Bellis made the most appearances, starting all ten matches.

This is the first time England have won their first two matches at U21 EURO since 2009, which was also the last time they qualified from their group with a game to spare, going on to reach the final. They have never previously won all three group fixtures.

Smith Rowe was the joint top scorer in the finals after Matchday 2, level with Switzerland's Kastriot Imeri on two goals; both players scored in each of the first two matches.


Germany claimed their third U21 title in 2021, when they equalled Italy's record of reaching a third successive final, having also lifted the trophy in 2009 and 2017.

This is Germany's ninth appearance in the final tournament and a sixth in succession. They have reached the semi-finals or better in each of the last four, failing to progress from their group only once in their last six participations (2013).

Two years ago, Stefan Kuntz's side finished second in Group A on goals scored in a three-way head-to-head also involving section winners the Netherlands and eliminated Romania.

Germany went on to beat Denmark 6-5 on penalties after a 2-2 draw in the quarter-finals before Florian Wirtz's double saw off the Netherlands in the last four (2-1), Lukas Nmecha subsequently scoring the only goal of the final against Portugal.

The holders won nine of their ten qualifiers for the 2023 finals – Antonio Di Salvo succeeding Kuntz two games in – to finish eight points clear of runners-up Israel at the top of Group B.

Germany's sole defeat was a 4-0 reverse at home to Poland on 12 November 2021 in which they were reduced to ten men after 19 minutes. It was their heaviest ever qualifying defeat and their biggest U21 loss since they went down 5-0 to Portugal in the 2015 semi-finals.

Jonathan Burkardt, who is not in the final tournament squad, contributed seven of Germany's 32 qualifying goals to finish as the team's leading scorer – one more than Youssoufa Moukoko, who scored on all four of his appearances.

The Matchday 2 defeat against Czechia ended Germany's nine-match unbeaten run in group games at the U21 finals (W5 D4), and was just their second loss in the last 15 (W7 D6) – the other 1-0 to Italy in 2017. It was also only their second reverse in 15 in the tournament overall (W7 D6), the other the 2019 final against Spain (1-2).

Links and trivia

Have played in Germany:
Tommy Doyle (Hamburg 2021/22 loan)
Emile Smith Rowe (Leipzig 2019 loan)

Has played in England:
Kevin Schade (Brentford 2023–)

Have played together:
Tommy Doyle & Josha Vagnoman, Faride Alidou (Hamburg 2021/22)
Emile-Smith Rowe & Tom Krauß (Leipzig 2019)

Substitute Alidou scored his first UEFA Champions League goal on his competition debut in Eintracht Frankfurt's 3-2 loss at Tottenham on 12 October 2022, Oliver Skipp coming on for the home side in the second half.