MX23RW : Tuesday, September 25 21:44:53

Gareth Southgate "very proud" of England Under-21s

England Under-21 manager Gareth Southgate says that he is looking forward to the European Championships next summer following his side's playoff victory against Croatia.

England Under-21 manager Gareth Southgate has spoken of his delight after seeing his side qualify for next year's European Championships.

The Three Lions claimed a 2-1 victory in the second leg of their playoff against Croatia this evening to complete a 4-2 aggregate win.

"I'm very proud of the group of players and the group of staff who now have the finals to look forward to next summer," he told the Football Association's official website.

"It's a great credit to Stuart [former Under-21s head coach Pearce] for qualifying for four finals and it put a bit of pressure on for tonight after all of the good things that we've done.

"We had to get to the Finals to test ourselves and we're effectively now in the quarter final stage and it shows that we have got some quality players and depth of talent."

England had won nine of their 10 matches in the group stages of qualifying.

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Saido Berahino of England runs away to celebrate after scoring his teams second goal from the penalty spot during the UEFA U21 Championship Playoff First Leg match between England and Croatia at Molineux on October 10, 2014
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