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RECORD BREAKERS?

Posted on 12 November 2005  - 12:00

White Hart Lane could turn out to be the setting for the breaking of an England Under 21 record crowd figure for the visit of France on Friday - should most of the remaining tickets be sold.

White Hart Lane could turn out to be the setting for the breaking of an England Under 21 record crowd figure for the visit of France on Friday - should most of the remaining tickets be sold.

Ticket sales are approaching 26,000 for the European Championship play-off match (kick-off 7.30pm) and Peter Taylor's team could well be playing front of a record crowd at this level. Capacity at the Lane is 36,240.

The biggest crowd to date for an Under-21s match was 33,184 at Derby County's Pride Park Stadium on 8 February this year, when Holland were the visitors. Pride Park also held the pevious record attendance, when 32,865 fans cheered England to victory over France in February 1999.

Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor has withdrawn from the squad after sustaining a shoulder injury

Coach, former Spur Peter Taylor, said: "No other country gets behind their Under-21s team the way the English football public do, and to play in front of a record crowd at White Hart Lane would really lift the team. Our confidence is already high despite some injuries and the fans can expect to see some exciting attacking football from both teams. France will be a tough proposition but we have the ability and self-belief to beat them."

The return leg takes place at the Stade Marcel Picot in Nancy on Tuesday 15 November, with kick-off at 8pm UK time. Victory over the two legs would see England progress to next year's finals, which will be played between 24 May and 6 June. The host country will be announced when all eight qualified teams are known.