Half-Time Report: England Under-21s leading Wales Under-21s at break

England Under-21 manager Gareth Southgate gives instructions to his players during a training session at St Georges Park on September 3, 2013
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England Under-21s take a 2-1 lead into the halfway stage of their European Championships qualifier with Wales Under-21s.

England Under-21s have taken a 2-1 lead into the halfway stage of the European Championships qualifier with Wales Under-21s this evening.

It was the visitors who made the brighter start at Swansea City's Liberty Stadium, with James Ward-Prowse and Jesse Lingard combining to set up Nathan Redmond early on, but the Norwich City man sliced wide.

Redmond and Lingard combined again in the 10th minute as the former found the latter with a cross, but the Manchester United youngster nodded his effort narrowly over the top.

The opening goal came in the 18th minute as Lloyd Isgrove dwelt on the ball for too long, allowing Redmond to dispossess him and coolly slide his effort past the keeper.

Wales responded immediately, however, levelling the scores within two minutes when Gwion Edwards nodded his effort past Jack Butland having been left unmarked inside the box.

The goal galvanised the hosts and they began threatening to take the lead, with only a fingertip stop from Butland denying Lee Evans's strike.

Butland was called upon again just five minutes later as a quick counter saw Evans and Isgrove combine to set up Wes Burns, who fired his effort straight at the keeper.

At the other end Connor Roberts was also making vital stops, denying Lingard from close range twice in quick succession with a double save.

The Wales keeper kept the scores level again with 10 minutes to go until half time, turning Luke Garbutt's dangerous effort around the post.

He could do nothing about England's second just three minutes later, however, with Redmond doubling his personal tally for the night with a fine finish into the bottom corner from 20 yards.

That was how it stayed until the break as England look to move nine points clear at the top of their group.

England's Michael Keane celebrates after scoring the opening goal against Finland during their 2015 UEFA European Under 21 Championships Qualifier Group 1 match on November 14, 2013
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